Woman accused of putting mothball in candy to get neighbor’s dog to ‘stop barking’


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SOUTHINGTON, Conn. (WTNH) – Police in Southington, Connecticut, have arrested a woman they say attempted to feed a dog a chocolate candy with a mothball inside.

On Dec. 23, officers say a caller reported he went to check on his dog and saw a woman walking along his fence line on his neighbor’s side.

The caller said he recognized the woman as a house sitter staying at the neighbor’s home. Police said the witness stated he saw the woman place a small item on a tree stump in the yard, and when he was going back into his house, he saw a similar item on his back steps.

Sandra Sullivan (Southington Police)
Sandra Sullivan (Southington Police)

Police said the item was described as a cream-filled chocolate-covered candy that had a strong and distinct odor that was consistent with a urinal deodorizer block or a mothball. Upon further examination, the witness reported there was a mothball hidden inside the chocolate.

When officers interviewed the woman, identified as Sandra Sullivan, she initially denied knowledge. She then allowed officers to look around the backyard where they located an identical item described by the witness. When questioned by police, Sullivan admitted to hiding a mothball inside the cream-filled, chocolate-covered candy.

Sullivan allegedly told police she was frustrated over the neighbor’s dog barking at all hours and decided to make a “treat” for the dog to see if he would “stop barking.”

Police said Sullivan told them her intent was not to hurt the dog, she just wanted it to stop barking.

On Jan. 25, Sullivan turned herself into police and was charged with criminal attempt to commit cruelty to animals. She was released on a $1,000 bond and is scheduled to appear in court next month.

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