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"5-year-old emotional support animal" at Portland Airport, lawsuit



WARNING: graphic image below

A mother filed a $ 1.1 million lawsuit against the owner of a pit bull and Alaska Airlines after the animal mutilated her face at the age of five at Portland International Airport.

The complaint, filed Monday in Multnomah County by Mirna Gonzalez on behalf of her daughter, Gabriela Gonzalez, claims that Michelle Brannan, the owner of the dog, should have known that her pet had "vicious inclinations" and that Alaska Airlines had allowed him to introduce a dangerous dog. the waiting room of the door without being confined or trained.

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According to the lawsuit, the incident reportedly occurred on December 18, 2017, while Gabriella Gonzalez was waiting at the C7 gate with her family for a flight to Texas from central Portland.

Gabriella, then 5 years old, was waiting at the door when Brannan entered the area with his pit bull, which was not kept in a crate, kennel or other secure container, according to the lawsuit. The child would have obtained Brannan's permission to pet the dog. While she was stroking the animal, he bit her, causing her serious injuries.

Gabriella Gonzalez was seriously injured in the face during the attack.

Gabriella Gonzalez was seriously injured in the face during the attack.
(Courtesy of Chad Stavley)

"As a result of this incident, Gabriella Gonzalez was injured in the muscles, tendons, bones, nerves and soft tissues of her face, eyes, eyelids, tear duct and lip. that an emotional trauma, "reads the trial. Gabriella was left with permanent scars and "underwent surgery to repair complex facial lacerations and damaged tear duct, she incurred medical expenses and will incur future medical expenses."

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Brannan had told the airline that the pit bull was an emotional support animal and had gone through the ticketing process at Alaska Airlines.

Alaska Airlines does not require that emotionally-supported animals be put in crates, stating on its website that pets must be at least on a leash and under the control of their owner. However, Portland Harbor felt that Brannan's dog should have been in a crate or kennel and cited it for not having done so before the alleged attack.

Alaska Airlines declined to comment on Fox News, stating that it would be "inappropriate" to comment on the case, but that the lawsuit still has not occurred.

Kama Simonds, a Port of Portland spokeswoman, said in an email to the Oregonian that the port could ask a traveler if the dog was an assistance animal and could request the service provided by the dog.

"The traveler only has to answer these questions and we have to accept them," she said.

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Chad Stavley, Gonzalez's lawyer, told Oregon Live that Brannan was apparently wearing a standard letter from his therapist, although it was not precise.

"It does not say what kind of animal," Stavley said. "It was just a generic" animal ".

The lawsuit alleges that Brannan is responsible for all the damage that occurred during the incident and claims $ 100,000 for past and future medical expenses and $ 1 million for the pain and suffering of the child.

What happened to the dog after the incident was not immediately clear.


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