Man attacked by K-9 speaks out after former Alpharetta officer charged in case
In 2021, Travis Moya sustained severe dog bite wounds after he was slammed to the ground and bitten by the K-9 when officers responded to a mental health call.
ATLANTA, Ga. (Atlanta News First) - An Alpharetta man, who was attacked by a K9 during an arrest in 2021, spoke out Wednesday following the indictment of the dog’s handler.
In 2021, Travis Moya sustained severe dog bite wounds after he was slammed to the ground and bitten by the K-9 during an arrest when officers responded to a mental health call.
RELATED: Man attacked by police K-9 plans to take legal action against Alpharetta Police.
On Tuesday, a Fulton County grand jury agreed to indict former Alpharetta police officer Michael Esposito with aggravated assault, aggravated battery, and violation of oath of office. Esposito is accused of maliciously causing harm to Moya by unlawfully directing the dog to bite the 36-year-old, seriously disfiguring him.
“This is a step in the right direction,” Travis Moya said. “I know we do have some more ways to go, but I’m appreciative for where we are now,” Moya said.
According to Moya’s attorneys, the indictment is believed to be the first in Georgia for a K-9 attack. Esposito was previously cleared of any wrongdoing by the Alpharetta police department.
“That’s why Fulton County spoke yesterday,” said L. Chris Stewart, Moya’s attorney. “They disagreed that a citizen should have been mauled like that. To the point where officers have to come with a hose afterward and hose the sidewalk off because there’s so much blood.”
Moya’s attorneys said the attack left their client with permanent scarring, and that he has nerve pain and spasms on a regular basis. They added that the mental trauma from the attack is equally painful.
“It’s difficult for him to be out in public and see police officers,” said Madeline Simmons, Moya’s attorney. “He also can’t have the same relationship with dogs as he used to have.”
“Support the good officers and when something bad happens, take accountability. That’s all every Georgian asked for,” Stewart added.
Moya was originally charged with obstruction related to the incident but the charge was dropped last year. His lawsuit against the city and other parties is still pending.
The City of Alpharetta declined to comment citing pending litgation.
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