Rottweilers can be expensive dept.: “A California county will pay nearly $1 million to settle a lawsuit brought by the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club after police shot and killed three guard dogs during raids of the group’s headquarters and suspected members’ homes.” Santa Clara County supervisors okayed the $990,000 settlement “two months after the U.S. Supreme Court rejected the county’s arguments that sheriff’s deputies should be immune from liability in the case.” The city of San Jose has refused to settle and may go to trial as a defendant. “Lower court judges ruled that actions of the deputies and San Jose police officers during the January 1998 were unreasonable, most of the evidence obtained was unnecessary and the officers did nothing to avoid killing the animals. A lawyer for club members says a lot of property was destroyed in the raids and some evidence was kept for more than a year.” (AP/CNN, Feb. 7). “Although they had a week to plan for the raids and knew of the existence of guard dogs, including a Rottweiler, the San Jose police officers failed to do anything to find a non-lethal way of incapacitating the animals, the courts said.” (Barry Witt, “Hells Angels win nearly $1 million from Santa Clara County”, San Jose Mercury News, Feb. 6). More than half the settlement, $530,000, will go to the lawyers representing the club, with the remaining $460,000 to be divided up among victims of the raid.