Girl, 13, made to hold punishment sign

March 21, 2013 at 3:59 PM

CRESTVIEW, Fla., March 21 (UPI) -- A Florida couple who punished their 13-year-old daughter by making her hold an embarrassing sign at the side of the road said the punishment was a last resort.

Gentry and Renee Nickell said their teenage daughter's behavior had become increasingly worse since Renee's brother was killed in Afghanistan in December 2011 and the sign punishment they used Saturday was an idea they had been given by a Christian counselor several years ago, the Northwest Florida Daily News reported Thursday.

"I'm a Self-entitled teenager w/no Respect for authority. I'm also super smart, yet I have 3 'D's' because I DON'T CARE," read the sign the girl held at the side of a road for 90 minutes Saturday in Crestview, Fla.

"I wasn't even thinking about what the public was going to think," Renee Nickell said. "I was thinking about our daughter. It was for her to be in the public and recognize what she had done wrong."

She brushed aside online criticism of the punishment and a call to the police from a witness who objected to the treatment of the teenager.

"I asked her, 'Were you scarred? Traumatized?' She said, 'No mom, I knew it was coming.'"

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