Judge orders man to hold ‘I am a bully’ sign

The Associated Press
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SOUTH EUCLID, Ohio – A judge has ordered a man convicted of harassing a neighbour and her disabled children to stand on a street corner with a sign that says he is a bully.

Edmond Aviv sits on a street corner holding a sign Sunday, April 13, 2014, in South Euclid, Ohio declaring he's a bully.

Municipal Court Judge Gayle Williams-Byers ordered 62-year-old Edmond Aviv to hold the sign for five hours Sunday. The sign reads: “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.”

The judge also said the sign’s letters must be large enough for the average person to see from 25 feet (7.5 metres) away.

Aviv pleaded no contest in February to a misdemeanour charge of disorderly conduct and was sentenced last month, according to court records.

Aviv has feuded with his neighbour, Sandra Prugh, for the past 15 years. The most recent case stems from Aviv being annoyed at the smell coming from Prugh’s dryer vent when she did laundry, according to court records. In retaliation, Aviv hooked up kerosene to a fan, which blew the smell onto Prugh’s property, the records said.

Prugh has two adult adopted children with developmental disabilities, cerebral palsy and epilepsy; a husband with dementia; and a paralyzed son, the Plain Dealer of Cleveland reported.

Prugh said in a letter to the court that Aviv had called her an ethnic slur while she was holding her adopted black children, spit on her several times, regularly threw dog feces on her son’s car windshield and once smeared feces on the family’s wheelchair ramp.

“I am very concerned for the safety of our family,” Prugh wrote in a letter to the court for Aviv’s sentencing. She told the newspaper she just wants to live in peace.

The judge also ordered Aviv to serve 15 days in jail and undergo anger management classes and counselling. He also had to submit a court-ordered apology letter to Prugh.

“I want to express my sincere apology for acting irrationally towards your house and the safety of your children,” Aviv wrote. “I understand my actions could have caused harm but at that time I was not really thinking about it.”

Aviv’s attorney, Scott Fierman, didn’t immediately return a message left at his office Saturday.

Geographic location: South Euclid, Cleveland

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