The law firm Chain Cohn Stiles has filed a claim on behalf of the family of 8-year-old Leilani Rivera, a Wayside Elementary School second-grader who was bitten on the face by a dog May 9 while in her classroom, the firm announced Wednesday night.

The child suffered severe lacerations and tearing to her face when she was attacked by one of two large dogs visiting her classroom at the south Bakersfield school, a news release from the law firm said.

The dogs belong to a volunteer reader from the Kern County Superintendent of Schools Office.

The family alleges in the claim that Bakersfield City School District and the Kern County Superintendent of Schools Office negligently allowed the volunteer reader to bring the dogs into the classroom, and failed to supervise the dogs in a safe manner. The family further alleges that the dog owner is strictly liable under California’s dog bite statute, the news release said.

A claim is generally a precursor to filing a lawsuit against a public entity.

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