UF professor arrested in assault case, GPD says

Published: Sunday, May 5, 2013 at 7:03 p.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, May 5, 2013 at 7:03 p.m.

A University of Florida faculty member has been arrested on multiple charges related to an incident in which police say she held a woman captive and threatened her, according to a report.

The Gainesville Police Department gave this account: Susan Marie O'Brien, 49, an associate professor of history, went to the victim's home around 3 p.m. Wednesday to return some items to her. When the victim opened the door, O'Brien forced her way inside.

As the victim attempted to call 911, O'Brien tried to yank the phone away and grabbed her throat before ripping the victim's shirt.

O'Brien then grabbed a steel bicycle lock and told the victim she was not going to leave until the woman gave her some prescription sleeping pills. When the woman went to her bedroom for the pills, O'Brien followed her in and blocked the doorway, waving the lock in her face and threatening her.

O'Brien left after about 20 minutes, and the victim called police. The victim told police the two had ended a 16-year relationship about six weeks ago.

O'Brien was arrested on charges of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon; burglary of an occupied dwelling; battery; false imprisonment; and obstruction of justice.

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