Delta passenger bitten by emotional support dog couldn't escape, attorney says


The man mauled by an emotional support dog on a Delta Air Lines flight in Atlanta was attacked twice and could not escape because he was in a window seat, his attorney said Thursday.

>> Read more trending news

The passenger, Marlin Jackson, of Daphne, Alabama, had facial wounds requiring 28 stitches, according to attorney J. Ross Massey, of Birmingham law firm Alexander Shunnarah & Associates.

“It is troubling that an airline would allow a dog of such substantial size to ride in a passenger’s lap without a muzzle,” Massey said in a written statement. “Especially considering the dog and its owner were assigned a middle seat despite Delta Air Lines’ policies that call for the re-accommodation of larger animals.”

Jackson boarded the San Diego-bound flight on Sunday and went to the window seat. Passenger Ronald Kevin Mundy Jr. was already in the middle seat with his dog in his lap, according to the law firm.

“According to witnesses the approximately 50-pound dog growled at Mr. Jackson soon after he took his seat,” according to the firm’s statement.

“We expect airlines to follow procedures as required and verify any dogs travelling unrestrained in open cabin are trained for handling the large crowds and enclosed environments encountered on board an airplane,” Massey said in the statement.

“The dog continued to act in a strange manner as Mr. Jackson attempted to buckle his seatbelt. The growling increased and the dog lunged for Mr. Jackson’s face. The dog began biting Mr. Jackson, who could not escape due to his position against the plane’s window,” according to the firm’s account.

“The dog was pulled away but broke free from Mr. Mundy’s grasp and attacked Mr. Jackson a second time … The attacks reportedly lasted 30 seconds and resulted in profuse bleeding from severe lacerations to Mr. Jackson’s face, including a puncture through the lip and gum.”

Jackson was taken by ambulance to an emergency room for treatment, then took a later flight to San Diego, according to Delta. He plans to consult a plastic surgeon, the law firm said.

The firm is seeking information on Delta’s “compliance with policies for unrestrained larger animals within a plane’s cabin and the verification process of their emotional support animal training requirements.”

Delta declined to comment on the law firm’s statement.

The Air Carrier Access Act requires airlines to accommodate service or emotional support animals, within certain guidelines.

Delta’s website says, “A kennel is not required for emotional support animals if they are fully trained and meet the same requirements as a service animal.”

Efforts to reach Mundy, who was not charged, have been unsuccessful. A police report said Mundy was a military service member who “advised that the dog was issued to him for support.”

The U.S. Department of Transportation said it is seeking details about the incident. The DOT says airlines cannot require that service and support animals be carried in a kennel unless there is “a safety-related reason to do so.”
Warning: Graphic images below:


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Nation & World

WATCH: Shirtless man steers motorcycle with bare feet on Florida freeway
WATCH: Shirtless man steers motorcycle with bare feet on Florida freeway

A Florida motorist posted a video Saturday that shows a motorcycle rider steering the bike with his feet — at full speed — on I-95.  The Jacksonville woman said the motorcycle rider passed her, even as her own car was going 60 mph. The rider didn’t have on a shirt or shoes.  >> Read more Floridoh! stories...
Shooter was provoked in deadly Walmart parking lot argument, police say
Shooter was provoked in deadly Walmart parking lot argument, police say

An argument in the parking lot of a crowded metro Atlanta Walmart got physical before it turned deadly, according to police. Snellville police and Gwinnett County’s district attorney have released new details in the Sunday night shooting that killed Fadil Delkic, 49, of Lawrenceville. Troy Hunte, 27, of Grayson, faces a charge of voluntary manslaughter...
Boy tied up at night to prevent him from eating, law enforcement officials say
Boy tied up at night to prevent him from eating, law enforcement officials say

The Sheriff’s Office in Baker County, Florida, said an observant teacher raised the alarm, leading to the arrest of two people in a case of child abuse. Deputies said a father is accused of tying a boy up at night to keep him from eating. They say his mother knew about it and didn’t intervene. According to the arrest report, the boy...
School superintendent recorded in racist rant, lawsuit says
School superintendent recorded in racist rant, lawsuit says

The superintendent of the city of Buford’s school district in metro Atlanta used racist language and spoke of wanting to kill black construction workers who had angered him, according to accusations in a race-discrimination lawsuit. >> Read more trending news  The complaint, filed in U.S. District Court in Atlanta, includes audio...
Woman credits dog for saving her from possible abduction
Woman credits dog for saving her from possible abduction

A woman from Volusia County, Florida,  said her dog saved her life when a stranger tried to abduct her during a walk in a neighborhood. Deanna Moore said she was walking her dog, a 14-year-old golden retriever named Sandy, Friday night in a Deltona neighborhood, when she said she heard a car pull up behind her on a street but did not think anything...
More Stories