SHOCKING footage shows the moment cops set their K9 dog on a black man who was kneeling on the ground with his hands in the air.
Jeffery Ryans, 36, says he intends to sue after being mauled by the police dog in an attack which could mean he may lose his leg.
The alarming video released by the Salt Lake City Police Department shows a K9 unit, named Tuco, attacking Ryans while he complies with police orders.
Cops said they were called to the home April 24 after neighbors allegedly heard Ryans, who has an order of protection against him for pending domestic violence charges, arguing with his wife.
The video begins with officers approaching Ryans as he smokes a cigarette in his backyard.
“Get on the ground or you’re going to get bit!” an officer orders.
Ryans is seen getting on his knees with his hands raised – but cops still order the dog to attack by repeatedly shouting “Get!”
“I’m on the ground, I’m on the ground, why are you biting me?” Ryans pleads in agony, still on the ground, as cops continue ordering the dog to bite.
Cops then praised Tuco, with “Good boy!”
“Stop, ow!” Ryans whelps, “What the f**k! Holy s**t, ow! Why are you guys doing this?”
Ryans has had multiple surgeries since the April incident and doctors believe he may still lose his leg, which suffered nerve and tendon damage and infections.
“I felt like a chew toy,” Ryans said in an interview with The Salt Lake Tribune.
“I didn’t know why this was happening to me. That’s what was going through my mind. Why?”
The officer who ordered Tuco to attack has been placed on administrative leave while an internal affairs investigation is conducted, cops said in a statement. The officer’s name has not been released.
SLCPD has also ordered a third-party review of its K9 apprehension program while the program is temporarily suspended to review policies, procedures and training.
“We are aware of the article published by the Salt Lake Tribune today regarding Mr. Jeffery Ryans and his intention to file lawsuit against the Salt Lake City Police Department for excessive use of force involving a police service dog. As there is pending litigation, we are unable to discuss specifics of the case,” the statement reads.
Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall said she is unable to fully comment on the incident because of the pending litigation, but has urged the police chief to complete the investigation with urgency.
“I am deeply concerned that it took a news outlet publishing this video for it to be brought to the attention of senior police department leadership and myself,” Mendenhall added.
In addition to his domestic violence charges, Ryans now also faces a charge of violating the protective order, The Salt Lake Tribune reported.
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