A concerned man contacted police when he saw his neighbor lock her dog inside a hot car as a form of punishment. When police arrived only minutes later, the dog was already dead.
Dog owners are repeatedly warned: it only takes a few minutes for a dog to die in a hot car. A Sandusky, Ohio woman who failed to heed the warning is now facing animal cruelty charges. Her dog suffered intense agony and fear before ultimately succumbing to heat while trapped inside her car.
According to a Sandusky Police report, officers were called to 58-year-old Mouheb Ashakih’s home around 7:20 p.m. Saturday by a neighbor who was concerned about her dog. Ashakih’s neighbor told police he’d been looking out his window when he saw her throw her dog “Chapo,” a 4-5-year-old pit bull, into the backseat of the sedan parked in her backyard. The neighbor told police he saw the dog frantically tearing up the interior of the vehicle, barking, scratching, and pawing at the windows to get out.
When he confronted his neighbor about the dog, she said, “I don’t care. I want him to die!” That’s when he contacted Sandusky Police.
Ashakih admitted to police that she’d put Chapo in the car to punish him for attacking one of her other dogs. Still inside the home were 4 dogs, a female and four 6-month old puppies. During this conversation with Ashakih, police did not observe a dog or hear any barking or noise coming from the parked car and thought that she’d brought him back inside. By now, the dog had been in the car for about 30-minutes.
When they learned that the dog was still in the car, officers jumped over a fence and rushed to the vehicle. That’s when they discovered Chapo, lifeless on the rear passenger floorboard. With the car locked and no keys immediately available, an officer used his baton to smash a window and unlock the door.
“I carefully shook the dog and noticed him to be stiff and very hot to the touch. There was also a very hot burst of air released from the interior of the vehicle when the window was shattered and the door was opened – considerably more hot than the temperature outside.”
Officers also discovered the vehicle interior was destroyed and covered in blood, indicating that the dog had struggled to break free. Officers placed Ashakih under arrest. The four remaining dogs were removed from the home, taken into custody by the Dog Warden.
Ashakih was booked into the Erie County Jail where she is being held without bond on felony animal cruelty charges.
At the time of the dog’s death, it was 81-degrees outside.