Dane Hampel Allegedly Lets His Puppy Die While He Goes to Court

According to an arrest affidavit on view below, one court appearance by Dane Hampel will lead directly to another one.

The reason: The death of an eight-month-old pit bull puppy that Hampel allegedly left in a hot car during a previous trip through the justice system.

The incident in question took place at approximately 11:15 a.m. on June 24 along the 1200 block of Delaware Street.

The area is seen in the following interactive graphic. If you have problems seeing the image, click "View on Google Maps."

On the morning of the 24th, a parking officer was issuing a ticket when he noticed a dog inside a blue Honda sedan.

The dog was in the backseat, panting and drooling, and no wonder. It was a hot day — the temperature was 91 degrees Fahrenheit — and all the windows of the Honda were rolled up tight.

The parking officer immediately put out a call about the situation and reps from the Denver police and fire departments quickly responded. So, too, did an animal control officer who arrived at 11:23 a.m.

By then, the puppy was unconscious. The temperature inside the car was recorded at 112 degrees.

Authorities were trying to revive the pit bull when Hampel ambled up. He identified the dog as "Harley" and said he'd left the animal in the car while he'd been in court. (The affidavit doesn't mention the reason he was there, but we found online references to a 2013 arrest for third-degree assault.) The court hearing had lasted longer than he'd expected, Hampel explained. He estimated that Harley had been inside the car for two hours.

Harley was subsequently transported to the Denver Animal Shelter. Unfortunately, the puppy didn't respond to treatment and had to be euthanized.

The Denver District Attorney's Office has now charged Hampel with one count of aggravated cruelty to animals. His next court appearance is scheduled for October 22. We hope he doesn't bring any dogs in the car along with him.

Here's a larger look at Hampel's booking photo, followed by the arrest documents.

Dane Hampel Arrest Affidavit

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts