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Lawsuit: Postal carrier's use of pepper spray at Otay Mesa home sickened kids

Suit: postal carrier's use of pepper spray at Otay Mesa home sickened kids
Posted at 5:45 PM, May 12, 2023
and last updated 2023-05-12 21:00:34-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - An Otay Mesa father hopes for change after filing a lawsuit against the US Postal Service, alleging a postal carrier went too far with his pepper spray.

Four years later, Pupa the poodle mix is fine, but Alfonso Galindo says his two kids are still suffering from the actions of a postal carrier.

February 2019. After countless hospital visits and months of coughing and mysterious breathing issues for his kids, ages 3 and 1, Galindo discovered a possible answer.

Odd stains on Galindo's patio off Agosto Street led him to check his surveillance video.

In it, a postal carrier appears to hold pepper spray under the mail as he walks by the closed metal gate at the front of Galindo’s home. Behind the gate is Pupa.

At the same time, from another camera, Pupa begins convulsing for minutes.

“Still makes me sick to my stomach. Brings back all the emotions, the anger,” said Galindo.

It’s one of nine similar recordings he found.

Galindo believes the postal carrier had been pepper spraying the dog since the summer, which got transferred to his kids.

“They hug and they play with Pupa, and Pupa lays in the bed with them,” said Galindo.

Galindos says both children were diagnosed with asthma. Though the symptoms are now less severe, they still linger on a daily basis.

“It’s sad and breaks my heart. We are still trying to find our justice,” said Galindo.

Recently, Galindo filed a personal injury lawsuit against the US Postal Service.

His lawyer Jason Evans says according to doctors, young children are especially vulnerable to pepper spray.

“Because the exposure occurred during the developing stages of the respiratory system of the lungs, it’s likely we're going to see ongoing symptoms into the indefinite future,” said Evans, an attorney with the CaseyGerry Law Firm.

Galindo hopes his lawsuit will improve training and policies for postal carriers and pepper spray.

“The message is that the post office can't just put our family and pets in danger and literally walk away,” said Galindo.

Evans says criminal charges filed against the postal carrier were dropped.

Following an ABC 10News story, the US Postal Service did issue an apology in 2019 and promised appropriate action.

ABC 10News reached out to their lawyers for a response to the lawsuit, and to find out if the postal carrier is still employed and are waiting to hear back.