Four Norfolk officers out of jobs following investigation into K9 attack on NSU student

Posted at 6:38 PM, Apr 03, 2015
and last updated 2015-04-06 17:20:26-04

Norfolk, Va. - Norfolk Police have announced that four officers are no longer with the department and another has been suspended for a few days after the chief completed his investigation into a K9 attack that injured a Norfolk State Student.

20-year-old London Colvin received more than 40 stitches and needs plastic surgery after she was attacked on January 25th.

Officers  were called out to Godfrey Street for a fight involving 35 people.  Police told NewsChannel 3 the officers used the K9 because they were outnumbered and Colvin was being disorderly.

"Their actions do not represent the values of my department. We have a great police department filled with men and women who work hard in this community every day. We must hold ourselves to high standards and embrace opportunities to strenghten our relationship with the people we serve. Some of my K9 Policy revisions include: restricting use of a K9 in assaults which involve an officer or citizen, and dispatching a supervising officer to the scene anytime a K9 is used to apprehend a suspect," says Norfolk Police Chief Michael Goldsmith.

However, on Monday when NewsChannel 3 asked Norfolk police how they plan to "restrict the use of a K9 during assaults" they couldn't clarify. NewsChannel 3 asked to speak to Chief Goldsmith himself, but he was not available.  The Norfolk Police Department is also refusing to tell us why these four officers are no longer with department, if they were fired or if they left on their own.

Jon Babinaue, Colvin's attorney, says Chief Goldsmith's actions speak volumes to him and his client.

"This is a big deal but hopefully everyone is learning from this and the police officers will get better and the department will get better and this will never happen to anyone again."

Babinaue added that Colvin was happy to hear about the changes to the K9 policy.

"London is very pleased though that the police chief has made some significant policy changes which in her words were hopefully this will prevent such a horrific action from happening to someone else."

In a previous interview with Newschannel 3, Babinaue mentioned that he and Colvin were thinking about filing a civil lawsuit. When asked about the lawsuit status, Babinaue said that at this time both he and Colvin are pleased with the City's actions and are not planning on filing a lawsuit right now.