St. Paul settles lawsuit after police dog bites teen

Full story: TwinCities.com

The city of St. Paul has agreed to pay $43,500 to settle a lawsuit accusing a St.
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1 - 20 of 25 Comments Last updated May 11, 2011
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“Ahhhh hee ahw”

Since: Aug 09

Twin Cities

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#1
May 10, 2011
 

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The dog is still on duty? KILL IT NOW!
being a st paul

San Francisco, CA

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#4
May 10, 2011
 

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citizen sounds like a great police officer. hopefully he is not working the Highland area
TaxTaxTax

Andover, MN

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#5
May 10, 2011
 

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Can we get this dog down on Lake Street and have him sniff out some terror suspects?
No more

Brookings, SD

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#6
May 10, 2011
 

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No citation issued? If my dog bit some kid in the park I bet you I would get a ticket issued to me for it. The boy's in blue can sure look the other way for one another.
unbelievable

Eden Prairie, MN

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#7
May 10, 2011
 

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Rinehart hey, was his dad a medic? If so, sounds like the apple didn't fall too far from the tree.
Javier

Minneapolis, MN

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#9
May 10, 2011
 

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being a st paul wrote:
citizen sounds like a great police officer. hopefully he is not working the Highland area
Can you read? South St. Paul is a city in Dakota County. Wow, the brightest ones are out tonight!
billy boy

South Saint Paul, MN

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#10
May 10, 2011
 

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I think the SSP cops were bribed with donuts by the cops in St Paul.
fred

Hayward, WI

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#11
May 10, 2011
 

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I remember reading about this at the time of the incident. There were unanswered questions then and I still believe there is more to the story.

In mid-March, it is full dark at 9 pm. The kid was not 'walking' anywhere. He was hanging out at the water tower with a girl of his acquaintance. It may have all been perfectly innocent. Maybe not. It is at least possible that Sarik was provoked despite claims otherwise.

Hopefully, this is the last we'll hear of the incident.
mama

Saint Paul, MN

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#12
May 10, 2011
 

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south st paul police are corrupt! after searching my purse for no reason (we were pulled over because my boyfriend's license was suspended for an unpaid parking ticket!)200.00 and a tin of mints --which they probably thought were pills they could get high on-- was missing. After they found a single shotgun shell in the trunk they cuffed us and had us sit on the curb while they tore the rest of the car apart. I also know a trash collector in south st paul who said the south st paul police try to bribe garbage collectors to search through people's trash for drug paraphernalia and god knows what else.
mama

Saint Paul, MN

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#13
May 10, 2011
 
the only good thing about dakota county is judge Rex Stacy. Really nice guy, and fair.
lol

Osceola, WI

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#14
May 10, 2011
 

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Police dogs are killers. they must be outlawed. This was attemped murder. The officer all the way to his police cheif is guilty of attempted murder.
Hitler made attack dogs famous. The GOP made civil rights history.
Badge 364

Saint Paul, MN

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#15
May 10, 2011
 
BADGE 364

Isaac Rinehart was arrested Tuesday (6-26-09) at the Maplewood Police Department. A woman walked into the Maplewood Police Department on Monday night, reported that her husband had assaulted her and said he was a St. Paul police officer.

She had visible injuries to her face, Maplewood police Chief Dave Thomalla said Tuesday. About 90 minutes later, officer Isaac Rinehart came to the police department and was arrested.

Maplewood police cited him for misdemeanor domestic assault, and he was booked into the Ramsey County jail.

The woman, whom Thomalla didn't name, told police she and Rinehart had been arguing, Thomalla said. Rinehart, 42, struck her face with his hands or fists, the woman reported.

A man who answered the phone at Rinehart's home Tuesday said Rinehart wasn't available and hung up.

St. Paul police have relieved Rinehart, a K-9 officer, of his regular assignment and placed him in an administrative position pending the outcome of the case, said Sgt. Paul Schnell, police spokesman.

He's also the subject of an internal affairs investigation after his K-9 partner bit a 13-year-old boy when Rinehart was off duty in March. A lawyer for the boy has filed a notice of claim with the city.

On Monday night, Rinehart's wife walked about three-quarters of a mile to the Maplewood police station from a home in the 2000 block of Barclay Avenue in Maplewood, where Thomalla said the assault happened and which Rinehart lists as his address.

Paramedics took the woman to St. John's Hospital, where she was evaluated and released,

Thomalla said.
Rinehart was arrested at the Maplewood police station at 11:40 p.m. Monday, according to the Ramsey County jail log. He was booked into the jail at 12:09 a.m. Tuesday and made his first court appearance later that day.

A judge denied Rinehart's request for a public defender, ordered Rinehart not to have contact with the victim and set bail at $1,000, which Rinehart posted. He was released pending a July 27 court appearance.

Rinehart, a St. Paul officer since 1994, has been in the canine unit since March 2007. He and his K-9 partner, Sarik, were among the St. Paul officers featured in Animal Planet's "K9 Cops."

South St. Paul police investigated after Sarik bit a 13-year-old in that city in March. The case was closed, and no citation was issued.

Mitch Fitzgerald needed three stitches on his lip and 13 on his arm, according to his mother, Terri Fitzgerald. She has said Mitch was standing near a water tower close to his home when Sarik ran up to him, knocked him down and started biting him.

St. Paul police began an internal affairs investigation in March and it continues, Schnell said Tuesday.

In December 2007, Sarik slipped from Rinehart's grasp while he was responding to a fight call in downtown St. Paul and bit a man who wasn't involved, according to a police incident report.

Rinehart's personnel file shows 16 commendations and four instances of discipline. Three were oral or written reprimands and one was a four-day suspension in 1996 for conduct unbecoming an officer.
Badge 364

Saint Paul, MN

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#16
May 10, 2011
 

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June 24, 2009

A July 27 court hearing has been set for a St. Paul police canine officer charged with misdemeanor domestic assault.

Isaac D. Rinehart, 42, was arraigned in Ramsey County District Court Tuesday after his wife went to Maplewood City Hall about 10 p.m. Monday claiming he had beaten her.

"She had some bleeding from her nose, blood on her shirt and her face was puffy and swollen," said Maplewood Police Chief David Thomalla, who was attending a biweekly City Council meeting when the victim walked into City Hall, where the police department also is located.

Rinehart's wife, who complained of rib pain, too, was taken to St. John's Hospital in Maplewood, where she was treated and released.

Thomalla said the officer turned himself in to Maplewood police after Thomalla notified St. Paul Police Chief John Harrington. Rinehart was booked about 11:40 p.m. Monday, Thomalla said.

The alleged assault occurred at Rinehart's residence, about a half-mile from Maplewood City Hall. Thomalla said Rinehart's wife lives elsewhere.

Rinehart provided no statement to police, requesting a lawyer instead. A man answering the phone at his residence Tuesday night declined to comment.

St. Paul police spokesman Sgt. Paul Schnell said Rinehart has been reassigned to administrative desk duty pending the outcome of the case.

Last fall, Rinehart was among several St. Paul K-9 cops to be featured on an Animal Planet TV series. But he has been the subject of less flattering news coverage, as well.

In 2001, Rinehart was one of three officers disciplined for not reporting the use of force in arresting an 18-year-old Illinois man. And twice during the past two years, his canine partner, Sarik, has bitten the wrong person, the most recent incident involving an off-duty attack on a 13-year-old boy in South St. Paul in March.

Thomalla said Rinehart's arrest was proof that domestic-assault suspects can "span the range of every occupation." Asked why the officer faced a misdemeanor charge, as opposed to a felony, the chief said "the injuries appeared to reach the misdemeanor level."

He added, however, that his department also has requested the victim's medical records for review, and if the injuries were more severe than initially believed, the case could be sent to the county attorney's office for consideration of felony charges.
Roderick

Minneapolis, MN

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#17
May 10, 2011
 

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This former K-9 cop, Isaac Rinehart, sounds like a real genius. It's no wonder they took the dog away from him and put him behind a desk. The drawers of which are filled with donut debris, no doubt.
AntiMelting

United States

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#18
May 10, 2011
 

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mama wrote:
south st paul police are corrupt! after searching my purse for no reason (we were pulled over because my boyfriend's license was suspended for an unpaid parking ticket!)200.00 and a tin of mints --which they probably thought were pills they could get high on-- was missing. After they found a single shotgun shell in the trunk they cuffed us and had us sit on the curb while they tore the rest of the car apart. I also know a trash collector in south st paul who said the south st paul police try to bribe garbage collectors to search through people's trash for drug paraphernalia and god knows what else.
Life must suck going through it as a victim.
THUG___FREE___ZO NE

Saint Paul, MN

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#19
May 10, 2011
 

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Hmmmmm..........strange. The kid is white.

Usually those K-9 dogs are well-trained.
RevolutionNo9

AOL

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#20
May 10, 2011
 

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No more wrote:
No citation issued? If my dog bit some kid in the park I bet you I would get a ticket issued to me for it. The boy's in blue can sure look the other way for one another.
Another case of the Brotherhood of Police and the "thin blue lie" covering themselves.

Yeah, you can bet you would have got more than a citation if it was you involved.
The Analyst

Carol Stream, IL

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#21
May 10, 2011
 

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Does this cop carry a gun?

Not a good idea.
LeDumbo

Saint Paul, MN

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#22
May 10, 2011
 

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Javier wrote:
<quoted text>
Can you read? South St. Paul is a city in Dakota County. Wow, the brightest ones are out tonight!
Maybe you should work on some reading comprehension. The St Paul police officer let his dog off the leash in South St Paul.
Thomas

Saint Paul, MN

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#23
May 10, 2011
 

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Why was a 13 year old kid "hanging" out near a water tower. Aren't those restricted.
I don't condone the officer but in March its dark at 5:00.

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