Judge Pinkey Carr feels Hardin needs to obey court sentence
By JAMES W. WADE III
For two days Shena Hardin, 32, of Cleveland, stood at the corner of East 38th Street and Superior Avenue in Clevelandfor an hour each day holding a sign saying “Only an idiot would drive on the sidewalk to avoid the school bus.”
Judge Pinkey Carr had ordered this to happen due to Hardin driving on the sidewalk, around a school bus and children. Judge Carr today said she was not satisfied with the way Hardin performed her duty Tuesday. Hardin barely raised the sign unless she was shielding the wind to light her cigarette.
Judge Carr also was disappointed in the way she used her cell phone to play games and talk while standing there instead of holding the sign as Judge Pinkey Carr ordered. “For me it was just kind of a smack in the face,” said Judge Carr said of Hardin’s defiance.
Hardin was caught on video driving on the sidewalk to pass a bus carrying special needs children. The portion of sidewalk she used to avoid the bus was the entrance to a day care.
When the bus driver noticed Hardin’s pattern alongEast 38th Street, he notified Cleveland Schools and had his cell phone camera rolling during one of her episodes. Police set up a sting and cited her on Sept. 11. Hardin originally pleaded not guilty to charges of not stopping for a school bus and reckless operation. She later changed that to a no contest plea.
“I felt like she was making a mockery of it,” Judge Carr continued, saying she spoke with Hardin’s lawyer to emphasize that Hardin must the sign and refrain from smoking and texting on Wednesday.
Judge Carr told us she chose the unusual sentence based on several things, including Hardin’s lack of remorse. “I think this would be very fitting for her. And plus it was my first thought when I saw the story. I said, ‘only an idiot would drive on the sidewalk,’” Judge Carr shared.
This sentence has gained national attention and has people coming by just to see what’s going on. “I never imagined that it would turn into this, all this national attention. Because at the end of the day as far as punishment, yeah, I want to punish the offender, but yet, you know, it’s about the community, too. I mean, she owes it to this community, she owes it to the children that were on that school bus, the parents, I mean it’s just a total disrespect, and I want to send a clear message that that’s not behavior that one should engage in,” said Judge Carr.