Police chief recovers from dog bite, animal under quarantine

Mom allegedly used cell to call drug dealer while in custody
By Tanya Mitchell | Jul 18, 2012
Source: File image Belfast Police Chief Mike McFadden is doing well after suffering a dog bite during a traffic stop Monday afternoon, July 9.

Belfast — Belfast Police Chief Mike McFadden said he is feeling better since experiencing flu-like side effects of a vaccination he had after being bitten by a dog during a traffic stop and subsequent arrest Monday, July 9.

McFadden suffered the dog bite, he said, as he was approaching the 1999 Jeep that belonged to the animal's owner, 38-year-old Kitina Bragg of China. Bragg was arrested on an operating under the influence of drugs charge following last week's traffic stop, which occurred after a citizen who was traveling behind Bragg called police to report the Jeep was "all over the road" and that the driver, later identified as Bragg, was "going to kill somebody."

McFadden said the dog bit him after he spoke with Bragg's 13-year-old son, who was a passenger in the Jeep at the time of the stop. McFadden was looking in the vehicle for Bragg's cell phone, because he was trying to find a contact number for one of her relatives so he could arrange a ride home for the boy and the two dogs that were inside the Jeep. McFadden asked the youth if he'd seen the phone, and the boy indicated he had not. McFadden said at that point, he suggested the youth step out of the car to get some air while he waited for a ride, because it was hot that afternoon. The dogs were still inside, McFadden said, but all of the windows were down to allow air into the vehicle.

After the youth exited the vehicle, McFadden said he peered into the Jeep in the hope of finding the phone, and that was when one of the dogs bit him.

"The dog poked his head through the back window and got me on the back of the arm," said McFadden Monday, July 16.

McFadden said he doesn't blame the dog, because it is typical for animals to be protective of their owners and their vehicles.

What surprised McFadden more, he said, was what he learned after reviewing the footage from the cruiser camera, which he said showed the location of Bragg's phone at the time he was searching for the device.

"She was in the back of the cruiser talking to her drug dealer," said McFadden.

Shortly after police secured a ride for her son and her dogs, Bragg was transported to the Waldo County Jail.

After the dog bite, McFadden said, he had to get a DTAP shot (a combination of the tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis vaccine), because he was not up to date on his tetanus shot. McFadden said he suffered from flu-like symptoms for a couple of days, which he attributed to side effects of the vaccine, but other than that the chief said he felt fine when he spoke to the Journal July 16.

Because police learned neither of Bragg's dogs had been vaccinated for rabies, McFadden said the dog that bit him is now under quarantine at a Camden animal shelter, where it has remained since July 9. McFadden said the animal would be held for a total of 10 days to determine whether it had been exposed to rabies.

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