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Family awarded $600,000 for pain and suffering after their dog was shot by police

P8010053_thumb By Tamara | September 20, 2012 | Comments (9)

Brandi was shot by a deputy and her family sued for damages

A jury’s decision to award a family $600,000 in damages for pain and suferring as result of their dog being shot by a Fredrick County Sheriff Deputy, was upheld this week by a Montgomery County Judge.

The Frederick News Post reported that the judge upheld the award of $600,000 to the family, but lowered the monetary compensation for veterinary costs from $20,000 to a few thousand dollars. This is one of the first cases in Maryland to recognize that pets are family members and not property.

Roger and Sandi Jenkins were at their Taneytown, Maryland home on January 9, 2010 when Deputy First Class Timothy Brooks shot their chocolate Labrador Retriever named Brandi while he and another deputy were looking for the Jenkins’ son on a civil warrant.

Screenshot of video footage of Frederick County Deputy shooting BrandiBrandi came outside of the Jenkins' home and bounded out to greet Deputy Brooks who immediately drew his gun and shot the dog, despite the fact that Brandi had stopped barking and never got within 3 feet of him. The incident was caught on a dashcam video from the police car and was shown during the court proceedings.

As result of the shooting, Brandi now requires life-long medical care and faced having her leg amputated as result of the wound.

When the Jenkins rushed Brandi to the vet, the deputies entered their home without their permission. As such, the deputies were also found to have violated the couple's constitutional rights. A few months later, Roger and Sandi sued the Frederick County Sheriff's Office and the state of Maryland for pain and suffering.

Although the defense claims the suit was driven by "money and greed" and that the officers were painted unfairly as negligent, in the end, the jury decided in the Jenkins' favor.

The Jenkins’ lawyer Cary J. Hansel said verdict, "The verdict makes it clear that Maryland citizens will not tolerate the killing and maiming of innocent family pets by those in positions of power." He noted that the law was lagging behind society's view that pets are more than property and are seen as family members. "I think it's important for the development of the law that pets be treated as animal family members."

Rebekah D. Lusk, also the Jenkins’ lawyer, added that, "From now on, police officers are on notice that they should think twice before using deadly force against a family pet."


The Frederick News Post's interviewed Roger Jenkins with Brandi a few months after Brandi's shooting in March 2010 where he recounts his version of events.

A news story after the jury came to their decision shows original video footage from the police's dashcam of Brandi approaching deputy prior to her shooting.


View more articles in: Advocacy and Animal Welfare

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Comments on this Article

I lmao@ this Achmad Jamal clown. You can bet your ass there WOULD be dead cops after they shot my dogs, AND, no court in this friggin' country would convict me because they would have been on MY property, AND the law says I have EVERY right to protect my children AND defend my property. Moron, read the law before you come to this country and start spewing shit you know nothing about. Just my opinion, and seems to be alot of others too, that these idiot, waterhead cops we have these days think they can come onto our property & do what they want. NOT. I don't give a good goddamn if they have a uniform on or not. No reason to come onto my property & start shit, is gonna get you into a situation you will NOT like, & wish you had never started. My dogs ARE my children, and I WILL protect and defend them with every bit of resource I have. I think the $600,000 was about 1/2 of what they SHOULD have gotten, and the idiot that shot this baby should be made to give up his paychecks for the rest of his life to this dog. There was NO EXCUSE for this idiot, & him having a gun and a badge was a serious error on the system there. I've been to many homes in my life and if there were dogs there, I was cautious at first, until I saw that the dog was friendly, then I was all over them, playing with them, & showing them affection. There's just way too many situations where cops act b4 they think, and they have complete disregard for people and their property, & their children. And yes, this country HAS to acknowledge that dogs are NOT property, but active, functioning members of a family. Not friggin' lawn ornaments either. Can't stand to see a dog tied to a chain outside. They belong inside, where the rest of the family is. 'Nuff said.
Too bad that cop is a soul-less idiot. He should have been checked out for some humanity before he was hired on as a deputy. Now he's cost a dog his health, a family a big slice of their happiness and the taxpayers a large sum of money for his incompetence and illegal activities. He seems to be more of the garbage collector type of a guy. Give a jerk a gun and power beyond his spiritual capacity and see what you get.
So very sad for another incidence of dog shooting in America ! This is BS ! Here in ST Petersburg ,Fla, we had a very heart breaking dog shooting about 2years ago, I golden lab , about one block from home in s very family oriented neighborhood was shot and KILLED by a female police woman, the police received of a wandering lost dog, the over friendly dog-I can't give name ect, cause of pending law suit, I have met him, my dog used to go swimming with him, they were so cute together , anyway, the policewoman cornered the dog aggressively in a back yard corner, as witnesses stated and when the dog tried to run away she freaking shot and killed him !!!!!!! an offer was made by the city, but still no closure, Who do the police think they are shooting non- aggressive dogs on or off their property in the guise of the law ! These are children , love ones in our families ! Back in the day everyone's dogs were all over our neighborhoods receiving love from everyone and treat and playing with the kids ! Boy the world has changed , and maybe not for the best in every way. The police do not need to use lethal force when their life or injury is not threatened ! They should use non - lethal means. Mace, batons ect !
it is sad that cops are out of control---there needs to be a better selection process---at least they should hire cops that can think before shooting---the public needs to keep on top of the problem cops and get them out---what happened to this idiot that shot the dog---is he still on the force--if so then then the town is on future notice so that when he "SHOOTS" again maybe punitive damages will be awarded--he needs to be fired---I will call and recommend it
This talk of murdering cops is the height of stupidity and macho posturing. You will be arrested and given life in jail or executed. Take the issue to court like this family.
This just happened to my baby boy "luke" this past Sunday. https://www.facebook.com/pages/Justice-for-Luke/174450632679714 My life will never be the same. The grief is almost unbearable
I guarrantee there would be two dead cops in my yard as I'd leave with my dog for the vets.
this enrages me, how many videos has everyone watched of cops killing or shooting family dogs? too many for me, crazy or not, if a cop shot and killed my boy i'd do the same to him the next day
Kudos to the judge who sided with this family. The rest of the country needs to embrace this as a law. There are far to many "law enforcement officers" who are nothing but cowards hiding behind the brass badge of courage and, too quick to draw their weapons. The officer involved should be held accountable as well. I am very happy that this dog did not suffer a fatal wound and the family is being compensated for their pain, suffering and, vet expences
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