Tue. Oct 3rd, 2023

SANTA ANA, Calif. – An Orange County judge reduced a felony charge of animal cruelty to a misdemeanor today for a man captured on video kicking and hitting a Labradoodle named “Steeler,” and allowed the defendant to avoid jail time.

Albert Frank Abad Jr., 34, accepted a court offer from Orange County Superior Court Judge Justin Glenn-Leistikow to plead guilty to one misdemeanor count of animal cruelty and be placed on one year of formal probation and ordered not to own any animals. Prosecutors had sought jail time for the attack.

On or about Sept. 15, 2022, a man later identified as Abad was captured on doorbell video kicking and hitting the Labradoodle, then dragging the dog down the hallway of an Anaheim apartment hallway. About a week after the video of the attack was released on social media, Abad surrendered Steeler to a Los Angeles animal hospital. He subsequently turned himself in to the Anaheim Police Department where he was booked on an arrest warrant.

Steeler was transferred to Orange County Animal Care and has since been placed with an out-of-state, nonprofit animal rescue organization.

“The love of a dog is unconditional and to betray that trust is truly disgusting,” said Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer. “Judges have the ability under the law to reduce certain felonies to misdemeanors, but it is shocking that Judge Glenn-Leistikow would exercise that discretion to give a break to someone who clearly has no issue engaging in cruelty to a vulnerable animal. No animal should be subjected to brutality at the hand of their owner and the Orange County District Attorney’s Office remains committed to holding animal abusers accountable to the fullest extent of the law.”

Deputy District Attorney Danica Drotman of the Consumer and Environmental Protection Unit prosecuted the case.

Glenn-Leistikow hails from Los Angeles County. Hewas appointed to serve as a Judge in the Orange County Superior Court by California Governor Gavin Newsom. Glenn-Leistikow had been a Senior Deputy Public Defender at the Orange County Public Defender’s Office since 2016 and had served as a Deputy Public Defender there since 2005. He earned a Juris Doctor degree from the University of San Francisco School of Law. Glenn-Leistikow filled the vacancy created by elevation of Judge Thomas Delaney to the Court of Appeal. He is a Democrat.

By Editor

The New Santa Ana blog has been covering news, events and politics in Santa Ana since 2009.

3 thoughts on “Dog abuser gets off easy thanks to an O.C. Judge who used to be a public defender”
  1. I am embarrassed at this judge’s actions not to prosecute this jerk as a felony. I agree with Todd Spitzer, totally. . I would like information on how I can file a formal complaint against this judge and his actions or lack of action there out. I am a 70 year Orange County resident and II would like information on how I can file a formal complaint against this judge and his actions or lack of action there out. I am a 70 year Orange County resident and I served on several Juries, and I’m absolutely appalled that this judge made this decision on his own selfless accord, ignoring the standard of the law

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