Apr 1, 2010: Animal shelter operator sentenced to house arrest and one cat or dog
By: Ed Meyer
Heather Nagel, one of the founders of Akron's Heaven Can Wait animal rescue shelter, was sentenced Thursday morning to 60 days of house arrest and prohibited from any further volunteer work with rescue animals at the shelter as penalties for her guilty pleas to animal cruelty charges.
The sentence was handed down in Akron Municipal Court by visiting Judge Michael Weigand, who also placed Nagel on three years of probation, ordered her to keep only one cat or dog as a personal pet and imposed random inspections of her residence once per month by probation officials and a Summit County Humane Society worker.
Nagel, who pleaded guilty in February to four counts of animal cruelty charges just before closing arguments were to begin in her municipal court trial, will have 30 days to comply with the sanctions, Weigand said.
More than 100 dogs and cats were kept inside the organization's North Hill house, which was raided by authorities in July.
City prosecutors had alleged that several dogs and cats were either sick or flea-infested and that most lived in cages and crates littered with urine and feces.
After the sentencing hearing, Nagel noted that because she had no previous arrest record, she expected that she would receive a sentence involving community service.
''I didn't expect this,'' Nagel said outside of court. ''I feel that I made restitution to the organization. I paid for all repairs to the Heaven Can Wait house, and any assistance they may have n
eeded, I physically provided or paid for. And I had planned that that would suffice.
''I was not expecting any possibility of a jail sentence or having to give away pets,'' she added.
Weigand, a retired municipal court judge from Barberton, gave Nagel 90 days in jail for each of the four counts to which she pleaded guilty in her Feb. 25 trial. But he suspended 300 of the 360-day sentence and imposed the term of house arrest in lieu of any jail time.
Under the 60 days of house arrest, Nagel will be allowed only a half-hour to get to work each day and another half hour to return to her home, Weigand said...." More
Jan 13, 2010: Shelter trial delayed
The trial for two Akron animal shelter leaders charged with animal cruelty will be rescheduled.
Proceedings for Heaven Can Wait founders Heather Nagel and her mother, Patricia Mihaly, were to begin Tuesday morning in Akron Municipal Court.
A new trial date was not immediately set.
Mihaly and Nagel are charged with 15 counts of animal cruelty. In July, authorities removed more than 100 dogs and cats from a home the group uses on Vesper Street in Akron.
The women have pleaded not guilty..." Link
July 17, 2009: Photo Tells the Tail After 100 Animals Were Seized From Rescue Organization
We are getting our first look at the living conditions at a privately run Akron animal organization.
More than 100 dogs and cats were seized from "Heaven Can Wait" on Vesper Street Tuesday afternoon.
The Sanitation Supervisor condemned the building and then the police conducted a search warrant and removed the animals.
70 cats and 38 dogs were taken to the Humane Society of Greater Akron in Peninsula. Officials say the animals appear to be in pretty good shape.
"Heaven Can Wait" rescues animals from local pounds that euthanize animals..." More & video