VIDEO: Dog owner arraigned in Sandusky municipal court

Donna Hansen was arraigned on charges of having a loose and unlicensed dog in court by Judge Erich O'Brien.
Sandusky Register Staff
Feb 28, 2013

Watch the video by clicking on the player below the photo to the right



Hoss you are right and any sane judge will see the law suit and throw it out and say this is a waste of my time.


Let is be a lesson for those who walk their dog without a leash and them them run, you will be facing the Judge. It is a good example to learn for those who wish to snub the law and think their dog can run wild. Dogs can be up on you in a minute and you cannot defend yourself and there can be serious bodily injury.

The Bizness

Agree with you 100% I am an animal lover but let's face it people are acting like a human was killed which is crazy. It is a dog, some countries eat dog, just like we eat cows, pigs, chickens, ducks, horses, frogs, and just about any other meat source.

Old Duke

Moderators have removed this comment because it contained Personal attacks (including: name calling, presumption of guilt or guilt by association, insensitivity, or picking fights).


If you would have kept the dog on that leash it would be dead. I would have shot it too.


I am the proud owner of two large dogs, one is a male rottweiler, we adopted him from the pound less than a year ago, he has been a wonderful addition to our family. However not everyone is cut out to be a dog owner, you have to tag them and take them to the vet. YOU have to provide them with exercise and a safe place to run and play. It is YOUR job to do what is right by your dog and to follow the law when it comes to your dog. I am sure that this family is very upset about what happend to Lucy, however to find out from the court that this is not the first time the dog got out and she was charged with this crime less than a year ago gives me pause to think that this family was not doing all that it should have to keep Lucy safe. And to hear that Lucy has never been tagged, makes me think that if you can't afford $18 for dog tags, maybe you should not own pets. To many people think that having a pet is all fun and games. It is not easy being a pet owner, vet bills, tag fees, and food can run into the hundreds if not thousands of dollars a year. I would like to say that even though this is a sad situation that ended in Lucy losing her life, may her owner stop and pause and take some of the responsibility of what happend to her. It is not all the fault of the officer, as a pet owner you have to take the responsibility of what your bet does. Just my two cents.


Did I get this right in one of the articles (there are so many now). Did Judge O'Brien say she still owed $70.00 from the last conviction. Why is she not in jail for failure to pay fines. I know I sure would be.




Yes she still owes 70 dollars from a past fine.


Paid it yesterday



You act excited that it took her to be in this position to have to pay it. She could have skipped a few meals and used her money for the fine.

LabMan are barking up the wrong tree if that is what you perceived from that post. I quess I could have added some verbiage to make it clear what my post was but I was just clearing up the question.

My stance is if you cannot pay a $80 fine for dog at large the day you are charged you have no business owning a dog. On the side of LE as well.




what a drain on society!


This is a very sad case. The dog had an irresponsible owner who had been cited twice before for having the dog running loose. this means the dog was loose many more times than when the police were called.

The police officer has had no training with dogs, and it was obvious he was not experienced with reading a dog's temperament. He overreacted to a dog that was not showing aggression, and was not a threat to him.

The poor animal paid the price for an incompetent owner and an uneducated police officer.

Toledo recently had a situation where a dog was attacking a woman, and the Dog Warden was able to tranquilize the animal and remove it without a bullet being fired. Toledo officers have training, Sandusky not so much.


"The police officer has had no training with dogs, and it was obvious he was not experienced with reading a dog's temperament."

And his reaction was to shoot before trying ANY OTHER methods. He had plenty of time to call for the dog warden, SPD's animal control officer, pull out a taser, etc. Instead, he opted to fire his sidearm in a residential area, and then proceeded to LIE about the details when the idiot owner came out.

I can't believe that so many people here are willing to give this officer a pass on his extremely poor decision-making abilities. BOTH the owners and this officer should be held accountable for their actions in this incident, imho.


couldn't afford tags or pay back fines..but has money for sweatshirts and a dogs get their tags for Christmas..


It doesn't matter what the circumstances are with the owner and her past history and I know I'm probably going to get slammed again - I did when I posted before about this - I don't know the exact protocol on this but if the officer saw a large breed dog running loose when he approached the scene his first duty was to unholster his weapon to prepare to defend himself. The same would be true if he came up on an unsecure crime scene. Now again I don't know if this is the SOP for any of this and I know I'm going to be slammed for my comments but I don't care!! I feel the officer was within his rights to shoot the dog for coming at him. I had a cocker spaniel - not exactly what you would call a large breed dog or even by any means a "vicious" dog - but I had to take him and have him put down because no matter what kind of training we had done with him he was extremely harsh and rough (for lack of a better explaination) around kids and I wouldn't risk the kids having him around them. I hated having it done but it was a last resort kind of thing. It was the dog or having a child hurt. The child wins every time!! And in this case we need to think about the officer who was just thinking he had a dog coming at him and reacted just as he would have had it been a person with a weapon.


Both parties where at fault IMHO. However, the Judge handled it very well. He was well read and well spoken. In other words, he did his homework.


The officer did the right thing! The owner was irresponsible and did not control her dog. Personally I’m glad the dog got shot.


dogs lunge. dogs protect their territory by barking and lunging and do not pose any real threat. this was overkill. while I agree the owner should be cited and fined, I feel the officer should face disciplinary action as he did not have to shoot this dog.


Enough, Sandusky Register. The comments are being copied and pasted throughout all the posts you have on this. I keep reading the same thing over and over again. Fine. You struck a chord. How many times do you need to hear it before it becomes as stale/rotten as 5 month old bacon sitting in the sun?


It's all about online advertisement dollars. Thus, they will continue to beat a dead horse, or in this case, a dead Rottweiler.


Put yourself in that officers shoes. He did not know this dog or the dogs normal behavior, all he observed and heard from the calls that it was aggressively pursuing people & himself. It is VERY obvious that this dogs owner DID NOT make her dog a priority until it was an issue. That does not mean she or the family did not love Lucy. It is that officers job to protect the citizens and himself in that situation. He was responding to no less than two calls from CITIZENS with problems. If you also note from the video how long the officer was at the house BEFORE the boyfriend even bothered to come out. Again NO Priority. I am very sad for this dog. I am very sad for the coming issues (Undeserved) for the city and this officer. I do not believe in posting blame, but responsibility for this dogs life. It 100% falls on its owner for it's care and well being. Both of those where not taken care of by the owner.

Now The Rest of...

Is O'Brien up for election soon, the most unprofessional arraignment I have ever observed. Whats the deal with a group with the defendant, it should only be a the defendant and or their attorney only, without his life experience advice. It was an arraignment, explain the charge, take a plea an move on. If he would have taken last years charge seriously maybe this situation would not have happened. He never left the the public defender mode. Time for a change at Sandusky Municipal.He is one of the reasons Sandusky Has its problem with crime due to his flipped attitude.


Moderators have removed this comment because it contained Personal attacks (including: name calling, presumption of guilt or guilt by association, insensitivity, or picking fights).


Judge O Brien is one of the most respectful and caring people who happens to sit on the bench today IMHO. He is not arrogant or flippant at all with people who are respectful toward him.

I don't know if you are an attorney or what, but I am sure that your comments must be coming from some form of confrontation with a courtroom, however, IMHO, it is unfair to blame the situation in Sandusky on his "flippant" attitude is pretty unfair as well.

Obrien does what he is allowed to do according to the law. If you or others do not like that he cannot sentence people to longer time in jail, see the Feds: they set the rules. If you think he was too hard on this defendent, look at the record, which stands about her very loudly. He cannot make case law up as he goes and believes that people deserve a chance to make good. This lady simply chose not to. It is not he that is at fault here, but her.

Julie R.

@ wiredmama: I don't know Judge O'Brien but if what you say is true --- that he is one of the most respectful and caring people who happens to sit on the bench today --- then I'll be the first to applaud him. He must be one of a very few.

Now The Rest of...

The feds don't set municipal court sentencing, the state does, we must agree to disagree if he sentenced people accordingly the repeat offenders might take their offense more seriously. Look at the record of the recent homicide defendants, they were given minimum sentences for previous acts of violence by this judge.


"Judge O Brien is one of the most respectful and caring people who happens to sit on the bench today IMHO." <<< wiredmama222

I agree.
Felonies go to the big court.