HUNTINGTON – A woman is suing the owner of a dog she claims viciously attacked her child and caused him injuries.

On Jan. 31, 2011, Jesse Beaman walked up to the door of Jeff Hanichan’s residence and knocked on the door, according to a complaint filed Jan. 30 in Cabell Circuit Court.

Joan Farley claims when Beaman did so, another child opened the door and a dog that was owned by Hanichan rushed out and attacked him.

Beaman had to climb onto the roof of an automobile to get away from the dog, according to the suit.

Farley claims Hanichan failed to maintain control of his dog and allowed him to run at large, in violation of Cabell County ordinance and West Virginia code.

Hanichan also did not offer or state that he would keep his dog quarantined for rabies observation, as his duty under West Virginia code, according to the suit.

Farley claims Hanichan was unapologetic for his dog’s attack on Beaman and never inquired of the child’s serious injuries.

Hanichan knowingly has kept and/or harbored his dog, notwithstanding the dog’s vicious tendencies and his habit of biting or attacking people, according to the suit.

Farley claims Hanichan had a duty to exercise ordinary care in controlling and/or restraining his dog and preventing it from causing injury to others, but breached that duty by allowing Beaman to be injured.

As a result of the defendant’s violation of West Virginia code, Beaman suffered bodily injuries; medical expenses; physical pain and suffering; mental anguish; emotional distress; limitations in activities; a diminution in the ability to enjoy life; uncertainty and fear from not knowing whether the dog carries any fearsome disease; and other damages, according to the suit.

Farley is seeking compensatory damages with pre- and post-judgment interest and for the dog to be humanely euthanized. She is being represented by Noel M. Olivero.

The state Supreme Court ruled in November that a dog's euthanization may only come as the result of criminal proceedings - a civil lawsuit isn't adequate.

The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge Paul T. Farrell

Cabell Circuit Court case number: 13-C-74

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