This story has developed in full.. a decision was made by a Franklin County Ohio jury.. they have convicted her of FOUR FELONIES and she will now face substantial prison time..
All for showing 14-18 year olds (who probably always saw it!) the cult horror film THE ABCS OF DEATH..
John Futty of the COLUMBUS DISPATCH reports it for the official record in a story filed for the paper.. Futty writes,
But the jurors were certain that she committed a crime by showing it to four more classes that same day.
The jury convicted Sheila Kearns yesterday of four counts of disseminating matter harmful to juveniles and acquitted her of one count.
Common Pleas Judge Charles Schneider scheduled sentencing for March 4. The maximum penalty for each felony count is one year in prison and a $2,500 fine, but probation is the presumed penalty for the low-level felony.
Think about this one more time..
A CRIME for showing a horror movie to students. Again, students who most likely already streamed the film a number of times on NETFLIX without parental guides stopping them or knowing of it..
Futty writes more,
Kearns spoke just three words outside the courtroom when asked for a reaction to the verdict.
“God is good,” she said.
Her attorney, Geoffrey Oglesby, said she will appeal.
Kearns, 58, of Miller Avenue on the South Side, had told investigators that she didn’t watch the movie in advance or while showing it during five Spanish classes at the high school on April 11, 2013.
But one student testified during Kearns’ trial that the teacher did watch portions of the movie. The student, who was 17 at the time, called the movie “disturbing” and said students “were going crazy” while watching it.
“Going crazy.” Most of us reading this have been in high school or still are. It’s not difficult to get a pack of hormone-laden teenagers to ‘go crazy’… it happens with merely anything during a long and boring day of supposed learning and education.
While I would agree that by the 2nd, 3rd, or even 4th time she saw the scenes she was showing to the classes, she would have realized by that point just what kind of a movie it was..
But as I wrote previously on this matter, I am alarmed that this is considered a crime and not just a disciplinary issue. First off.. the movie has been released, and has it has been watched countless times by all age groups on Netflix.. There are websites, Tumblrs, and Facebook pages dedicated to talking about it–many times children perhaps too young are doing it. I would be surprised if most of the children that day in school weren’t watching the movie for their second time or more..
Tim League, one of the producers of The ABCs of Death, talked about the movie last night from his home in Austin, Texas. He said that when he first heard about the trial, he thought it was a “joke story” because he couldn’t believe the movie would be shown to a high-school class.
“I agree with the prevailing sentiment that this is absolutely inappropriate for a substitute teacher to show anyone under the age of 17,” League said. “It’s not a movie for children.”
A joke it is not.
A teacher has lost her freedom.. will face jail time and substantially high fines.
But she will appeal.
The ABCs of getting fired.
And the ABCs of making something ‘off limits’ even more pervasive.. the kids who didn’t get the chance to ‘go crazy’ that day by watching the film have undoubtedly seen it be now..