SALEM, Mass. (AP) — A judge has refused to dismiss a negligence lawsuit against a Massachusetts restaurant for its alleged role in an attack on a police officer who had a piece of her ear bitten off.

The Salem News reports that the judge last week found that Salem's Tavern in the Square could be liable for Officer Jessica Rondinelli's injuries because she was acting as a rescuer when she arrested a 19-year-old woman that had been drinking at the establishment. That woman was convicted of assault and battery for biting the officer's ear.

The restaurant argued the officer wasn't a member of the general public and not owed a duty of care.

The judge concluded that the law imposes a duty of care on officers responding to calls stemming from negligence.

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Information from: The Salem (Mass.) News, http://www.salemnews.com