Pick on the disabled, and you will be publicly shamed. That was the point a municipal judge tried to make with Edmond Aviv, 62, of South Euclid, OH.
Judge Gayle Williams-Byers ordered Aviv to wear a sign that read, “I AM A BULLY! I pick on children that are disabled, and I am intolerant of those that are different from myself. My actions do not reflect an appreciation for the diverse South Euclid community that I live in.”
He begrudgingly wore the sign, for which the judge selected the wording, for five hours on Sunday.
“The judge destroyed me,” Aviv says. “This isn’t fair at all.”
Too damn bad, as if it’s fair to pick on those who can’t fight back.
The sentence stems from a neighborhood dispute where Sandra Prugh says Aviv bullied her and her disabled children – one has cerebral palsy, a second has epilepsy, a third has paralysis, and the husband has dementia – for at least 15 years. Prugh writes in a letter to the court that Aviv has called her an ethnic slur, spit on her, threw dog feces on her son’s car windshield, and smeared feces on a wheelchair ramp.
“I am very concerned for the safety of our family,” writes Prugh.
Most recently, Aviv was annoyed at the smell coming from Prugh’s dryer vent, so he hooked up kerosene to a fan and blew the scent back onto Prugh’s property, according to court records.
Aviv pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor disorderly conduct charge. In addition to the sign, Judge Byers ordered Aviv to 15 days in jail, anger management, and a handwritten apology.
“I want to express my sincere apology for acting irrationally towards your house and the safety of your children,” Aviv writes. “I understand my actions could have caused harm but at that time I was not really thinking about it.”
I wonder if the judge had to pen that for him, too.