By Devin Bartolotta

LINTHICUM, Md. (WJZ) — The owner of a dog once kept chained to the back porch, is now in shackles of his own.

53-year-old Herbert Sensibaugh is behind bars, accused in a display of animal cruelty that shocked his Linthicum Heights neighbors.

“It makes you sick to think that there’s people out there that actually intentionally abuse an animal like that. It’s a living, breathing, feeling thing.” His neighbor, Robert Burch said.

In a warrant for Sensibaugh’s arrest, police say Rebel was tied to the bumper of a pickup truck with a short rope — as Sensibaugh dragged the dog around the block — near his home on Charles Road.

At first, animal-lover Robert Burch thought it was an accident — and chased after the truck until the driver got out.

Herbert Carl Sensibaugh (Credit: Anne Arundel County Police)

“He says to me, ‘what the f do you want?’ And I said ‘you know you got a dog tied to the back of your truck’ and he says ‘yeah I know I got a dog tied to the back of my truck, why don’t you mind your own f’in business? It’s my dog, and I’m teaching it a lesson about running away.” Burch said. “And of course… I’m dumbfounded, of course.”

A group of ten neighbors confronted the man — and when police arrived, Rebel was limping and had a bloody paw.

County Councilman John Grasso caught wind of the case the next day, and took it straight to the police chief.

“Chief got right on this deal and this piece of crap now is going to have more problems than he knows what to do with.”

Arrested Wednesday morning, Sensibaugh faces four animal cruelty counts for intentionally torturing the German short haired pointer mix he may never get back.

“The suspect voluntarily signed the dog over to animal control, to give animal control possession of the dog. So it’s certainly something that’s of concern to us.” Lt. Ryan Frashure said.  “Again, even though those injuries were minor to the dog, you know, you have to think about the mental abuse on that dog as well.”

Police say when they arrested their suspect, they found cocaine and nearly 100 prescription pills he did not have a prescription for. Sensibaugh has a long history of criminal drug charges.

The dog, Rebel, was treated by a veterinarian and received antibiotics. He’s currently in protective care while he recovers.

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Devin Bartolotta


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