Employee listening to classical music, bitten by police dog

An EVSC employee was bitten by a police K9. It's a strange case prompted by a 911 call saying a suspicious person was inside a school building. Police thought a burglary may have been in progress but they had it wrong.

14 News sat down with Evansville Police Chief Billy Bolin to hear it from him what happened, why, and how a situation like this could possibly be prevented in the future.

It started around 8:40 Saturday night with a 911 call from a man walking his dog near Stockwell Elementary School.

"The computer room light's on. There's an individual walking around with no shirt on with a single vehicle out front," said the man in the 911 call.

When Evansville Police showed up, Chief Bolin says officers saw the shirtless man and thought a burglary was going on.

"They call for backup. We have a K9 respond. The K9 went in the building with another officer, and went to the room where they saw the person," said Bolin.

Bolin says once there, the K9 officer couldn't see the man, so he gave verbal commands twice, identifying them as the K9 unit.

"Nobody answers, he lets the dog go in, and ends up biting the guy on the leg," said Bolin.

That guy, was Adam Saalman, an IT employee with the EVSC, who was allowed to be in the building.

The school corporation says Saalman didn't respond to police because he was listening to classical music with earphones.

The EVSC tells us Saalman used proper protocol, letting the school's security company know he was there.

But Chief Bolin says while everything was happening, officers didn't call that company.

"In hindsight, I wish we would have known he called the security company and I wish we would have called and confirmed it, but we acted on what we saw," said Bolin. "It's a bad turn of events, but I don't think we did anything wrong. It's unfortunate and we're sorry the guy got bit, but I mean we were trying to do what we thought was right."

Saalman was bitten and scratched up on the leg, but his wounds didn't require stitches.

Chief Bolin says they'll take care of damages and do plan on calling the alarm company in the future if there are other incidents like this.

But he wants to emphasis that isn't a particular protocol for officers in every situation and doesn't think officers necessarily did anything wrong.

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