Two adult women stood outside a Pennsylvania courthouse for four and a half hours with giant signs: “I stole from a nine-year-old on her birthday! Don’t steal or this could happen to you!”
A little girl had placed her gift card on a shelf while a Wal-Mart employee assisted her – ostensibly with her purchases. The women – fifty-six-year-old Evelyn Border and thirty-five-year-old Tina Griekspoor – grabbed the card and took off.
Talk about stealing candy from a baby.
According to an NPR report, Border and Griekspoor have agreed to plead guilty to theft – and they’ll receive a lighter sentence for agreeing to stand outside the courthouse with their signs held up. They’ll likely face probation rather than jailtime.
The little girl’s mother said she made it a point to swing by the courthouse to show her child the importance of obeying the law. No doubt being a victim of a crime helped cement that one in this little girl’s mind as well.
This sort of punishment has been used a lot on kids in recent years – shame works well on them because they’re still caught up in what other people – other kids – think of them. It’s more rare to see it done on adults. But hurting a child is considered one of the lowest crimes possible (hence even hardcore murderers turn on child molesters in prison) – the shame factor is high.
Is this the sort of punishment that should be wielded more often by judges dealing with crimes on kids?
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