* Re the two-part series on police dog bites, Feb. 29 and March 1:
Who are we kidding? The criminal justice system is really the criminal Lotto. A criminal commits crimes and when caught he can sue the police who captured him, the good Samaritans who helped and even his victims for fighting back. He can sue and he will win (or at least get an out-of-court settlement) probably more money than most of us law-abiding citizens will ever see in our entire lifetimes.
Your articles on police dogs are a textbook case. When word on the street was that police dogs could "seek and bite" suspects attempting to escape capture, the number of suspects who surrendered peacefully went up. Then, when the lawsuits came and big bucks were handed out to convicted felons who were told to surrender, but resisted arrest and got bitten (as they were told they would be), the new word on the street is that police dogs can only "seek and bark."
Sure, the number of dog bites has gone down, and so has the number of arrests. So now there are more criminals on the streets committing more crimes. Law enforcement is forced to back off the pursuit of criminals who will later sue and win big bucks from a city already perilously close to bankruptcy.