Talladega police dog, K-9 officer under investigation - WBRC FOX6 News - Birmingham, AL

Talladega police dog, K-9 officer under investigation

The Talladega Police station. (Source: Dixon Hayes/WBRC) The Talladega Police station. (Source: Dixon Hayes/WBRC)
Christopher Twyman was allegedly bitten by the dog. (Source: Talladega County Jail) Christopher Twyman was allegedly bitten by the dog. (Source: Talladega County Jail)

A Talladega police dog has been taken out of service and his K-9 officer put on paid administrative leave following an investigation into multiple incidents in which the dog allegedly attacked people.

Police Chief Jason Busby confirmed he'd requested an investigation from the Talladega County District Attorney's Office and received word back that such an investigation would soon be underway. 

The K-9 officer has not been named, but Busby confirmed the dog was Andor, the same dog that was stabbed during a manhunt in March. Frank Andrews, 48, has been indicted for harassing a police animal and other charges in connection with that incident near Munford.

Busby said the request came after the department completed its own internal investigation.

Local NAACP President Rev. Hugh Morris demanded the investigation following five separate incidents in which the dog allegedly attacked people. Some of the victims required stitches.

One of them, Ashley White of Oxford, required stitches. Her father, Robert Gainey, said his daughter ran out of a car that had been stopped by police, because she had "a past" with the police and was trying to straighten her life up. Gainey said she was apparently afraid she'd be arrested or at least detained by the police over her association with two other people in the car.

Gainey said the driver of the car wouldn't stop when police turned on their lights.

"Mind you, she'd been in trouble before and she was scared," Gainey said. "She had just gotten back to where she didn't have to worry about paying restitution for probation, she was working, she was trying to do better."

At the time, Busby told FOX6 News the woman ran from the car, and the dog found her and stopped her in some nearby woods. That's where Gainey said she was attacked by the dog. Gainey says the dog bit her repeatedly between her legs, and she required extensive surgery. He says she'll need reconstructive surgery.

"He argued with the EMT about taking her to jail," Gainey said. "But when she got to the hospital, he didn't even have a charge to charge her with. She had no drugs, no weapon, they didn't find anything."

FOX6 News had intended to interview White, who still hasn't been charged with anything from that incident. But when we arrived, two plainclothes investigators were interviewing her in her parents' living room. Gainey said the two men identified themselves as being from the FBI, but the FBI doesn't confirm ongoing investigations as a matter of routine. Busby said he was unaware of any involvement from the agency.

The incident with White was the first of what Morris claims are at least five different questionable incidents involving the police dog biting people.

The most recent, he said, was the one in which Christopher Lashaun Twyman said he was bitten on the arm at the Talladega Downs Housing Complex. At the time, someone emailed FOX6 News a Facebook post indicating officers were laughing about the incident, which allegedly started because Twyman was carrying an open container.

Police arrested Twyman Wednesday and took him back to the Talladega County Jail, where records indicate he was arrested in February on a parole violation. Twyman's bond was apparently revoked in that case. His mug shot shows a cast on his left arm.

Busby made few comments about the ongoing investigation, he says because it's being handled by an outside agency. Busby did, however, say the process would be as transparent as possible once the investigation is complete.

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