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Angie Harmon sues Instacart over fatal dog shooting, PTSD; app is 'beyond responsible,' she says

Nardine Saad, Los Angeles Times on

Published in Cats & Dogs News

Angie Harmon and her daughters are still processing grief from the death of their dog, with the actor filing a lawsuit against Instacart and the delivery person who she says shot her pet Oliver at her North Carolina home in late March.

The "Law & Order" and "Rizzoli & Isles" alum, who filed a civil lawsuit over the March 30 incident in Mecklenburg County, North Carolina, believes the app is "beyond responsible for all this."

"It's so unfathomable to think that there is somebody in your front driveway that just fired a gun," Harmon said Wednesday on "Good Morning America." "And you don't ever forget that sound."

"I've played law enforcement for 30 years. It's just so different," she added. "People need to know that, you know, who they're talking to on Instacart is not necessarily who's going to show up at your house."

Harmon is suing Reid and Instacart's parent company, Maplebear Inc., for alleged trespassing, negligence, negligent supervision/hiring, invasion of privacy, negligent misrepresentation and the taking of property. She is seeking more than $25,000 in damages.

In her lawsuit, the actor accused the delivery person — identified as Christopher Anthoney Reid in legal papers but as an elderly woman named Merle in the Instacart app — of getting out of his car at her house in Charlotte, North Carolina, delivering her groceries and then shooting the dog. Harmon said she "had no idea that she had been communicating with Defendant Reid" ahead of the delivery and shooting, believing him to be the shopper named Merle," according to the complaint, obtained Wednesday by The Times.

 

Harmon's lawsuit alleges that Reid, whose father's name is Merle, was impersonating Merle on the Instacart app and described him as a "tall and intimidating younger man." She said that Reid was not injured or seriously threatened by the German shepherd-beagle mix and that he had "ample opportunity" to leave the property unharmed without allegedly shooting the dog. She further alleges that she did not consent to Reid accessing the property, delivering groceries or accessing her personal information in any way.

Chronicling the incident in her lawsuit, much like she did on social media after the shooting occurred, Harmon alleges she heard what sounded like a gunshot after Reid arrived. While she was upstairs feeding her squirrels, her children were in the backyard, the suit said.

"Terrified for her children's safety, Ms. Harmon immediately ran downstairs to determine [the] source of what she thought was a gun shot," the complaint said. "As Ms. Harmon walked outside, she saw [her children] in distress. Ms. Harmon immediately noticed that Defendant Reid was placing a gun in the front of his pants, potentially in his pant pocket. Looking to the side, she saw that her beloved dog, Oliver, was shot."

The lawsuit accuses Reid of violating local laws by discharging his gun inside city limits and argues that he had "no legal right" to access Harmon's property.

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