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Woman sues after New York police horse bites finger


View of the bite in a photo provided by Ekberg's lawyer. Photo credit nypost

View of the bite in a photo provided by Ekberg’s lawyer. Photo credit nypost

A New York police horse bit off more than it could chew when it chomped off the fingertip of a Swedish-born woman who is now suing the city for negligence.

Marketing analyst Pernilla Ekberg, 28, was on a night out with her boyfriend and friends in Manhattan last November when they spotted the officer and horse on the street, her lawyer said.

“A few people were petting the police horse. Pernilla approached the officer, asked permission if she could indeed touch the horse, and he said ‘yes,'” Eliot Bickoff told AFP on Friday.

“The horse immediately chomped down on the right ring finger of her right hand, took a chunk off her finger tip and spat it on the floor,” her lawyer added.

Instead of checking whether she needed medical attention or making a report, the officer immediately rode off, Bickoff said.

It was left to Ekberg’s boyfriend to put the fingertip on ice, but doctors were unable to save it.

She underwent a partial amputation in the hospital, followed by “months of painful recovery” and physical therapy that has left her with permanent nerve damage, her lawyer said.

“She has a significant disfigurement,” Bickoff said. His client is right handed, and the loss of her fingertip has made typing, holding a pen and interacting with people difficult.

The suit was filed on Thursday against the city of New York and the police department at the New York Supreme Court, he said.

It accuses authorities of negligence on the part of their police officer and “the vicious propensities of the horse,” he said.

“They should be held responsible,” Bickoff said.

Police did not immediately respond to a request to comment.

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