Navigation

Broward News

Embattled Greyhound Trainer Has Been Investigated Since Arrest

Ursula O'Donnell was arrested in 2002 for helping to kill more than 2,000 greyhounds. Last month we learned she was still working as a trainer in the state of Florida, where her alleged crimes took place. The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation investigated O'Donnell, a member of the...
Share this:

Ursula O'Donnell was arrested in 2002 for helping to kill more than 2,000 greyhounds. Last month we learned she was still working as a trainer in the state of Florida, where her alleged crimes took place. The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation investigated O'Donnell, a member of the most prominent dog racing family in the state. When one witness died and another disappeared, the charges were dropped. But according to records obtained by The Juice, O'Donnell has hardly kept her nose clean since the felony animal cruelty arrest.


O'Donnell has several complaints on record with the DBPR.

In addition to a DUI charge in Connecticut, most of her issues have related to the treatment of greyhounds.

In 2003, a year after her arrest, at least one of O'Donnell's dogs tested positive for Dimethyl Sulfoxide, a class V drug sometimes used to mask performance-enhancing chemicals and possibly narcotics. According to state records, for this, O'Donnell received an official reprimand. It's not clear how or why she was still racing dogs at the time, since she was under a felony investigation and her license should have been suspended.

She received the same punishment last year, when at least one more of O'Donnell's dogs tested positive for the same drug.

In 2007, she had a charge of falsification, after she said on a DBPR license application that she had not been convicted of related felonies (which is true), and she did not give details as to why her license had been suspended previously (of course the reason is that she was charged with felony animal cruelty).

She also has two charges of racing a dog owned by someone unlicensed in Florida. The dog in question, CJ Racey, was entered in at least two races in Naples as recently as December. For this, O'Donnell paid about $75 in fines.

Multiple sources say she was also asked to leave a racetrack and casino at one point when she was gambling with a minor present.

As of now, O'Donnell has an active license in the state of Florida, though owners of the track in Naples where she was working have asked her to stop associating with their properties.

KEEP NEW TIMES FREE... Since we started New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of South Florida, and we'd like to keep it that way. Your membership allows us to continue offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food, and culture with no paywalls. You can support us by joining as a member for as little as $1.