TAKOMA PARK, Md. (FOX 5 DC) - Takoma Park police have released body camera video Friday that shows a woman, Ayanna Brooks, being mistakenly bitten by a police K-9 earlier this month.
On Dec. 4 just after midnight, Brooks and her boyfriend, Joseph Burroughs, were walking their dog along Carroll Avenue near Maple Street as officers were in the area searching for suspected car thieves. According to police reports, an officer’s K-9 named Drogo broke free and latched onto Brooks’ leg.
“Get him off! Get him off!,” Burroughs is heard yelling in the video while Brooks screams in pain.
Brooks and Drogo are separated, and shortly thereafter, an officer is heard on the video saying, "Her dog just freaking took off and, um, bit this citizen. So yeah, bit the [expletive] out of the citizen."
Brooks ended up with 21 stitches and said – almost a month later – she is still recovering from the bite.
“I just don’t understand how that happened,” she said Friday after seeing footage of the ordeal for the first time.
Brooks said that while she is back to work, her leg still hurts constantly, adding that – both physically and especially mentally – it’s going to take her time to recover.
“There is just this feeling of anxiety that just hangs over me – like anytime I have to step outside of my house," she said. "Because it’s like something mundane and normal that I have done a million times. As you saw, it can just easily turn into a tragic event and it’s hard to deal with every day."
Takoma Park police declined to comment for this story, citing an ongoing investigation. A spokesperson did say that both the K-9 as well as its handler were recertified after the incident and that Drogo has yet to return to duty.