An empty classroom. Photo by Oleksandr Berezko/Shutterstock
COLUMBUS, Ohio, March 5 (UPI) -- An Ohio judge sentenced a former substitute teacher to 90 days in jail for showing high school students a movie containing graphic sex and violence.
Sheila Kearns, 58, was sentenced by Franklin County Common Pleas Judge Charles A. Schneider Wednesday to 90 days in jail and three years of probation after she was convicted in January of four felony counts of disseminating matter harmful to juveniles.
The court heard Kearns, who was fired from Columbus City Schools in June 2013, showed a movie called The ABCs of Death to her classes on April 11, 2013. The movie, which is composed of 26 chapters based around letters of the alphabet, is not rated by the MPAA, but the IMDB Parents Guide warns it contains a high amount of graphic sex and violence.
Kearns told the court she had not screened the film before showing it to her classes and she did not watch it along with the students. However, Schneider rejected her explanation.
"There's no way you'll persuade me that's what happened," he said.
The judge also criticized the school district for putting Kearns, who does not speak Spanish, in charge of a Spanish class.
"This is what happens when you put a teacher in a class that she cannot teach," Schneider said. "They put a permanent substitute in a high-school Spanish class who can't speak Spanish at all. Here we are, with the Columbus public schools telling us what wonderful things [they] are doing."