The punishment we would expect might be jail time, community service or paying a fine, but one judge in Ohio used to get a lot more creative.
Michael Cicconetti is now retired, but he used to be a judge in Painesville, Ohio. When someone came into his court room for their first offense, sometimes he decided to give them a couple options instead of just sending them straight to jail.
For example, one time a woman came into his court room because she had been letting her dog live in a filthy environment. He let her choose between going to jail or spending the day in the stinkiest part of a local dump. You can hear Cicconetti give his unusual punishment in the video below.
This was far from the only time Cicconetti gave an unusual punishment. For example, on another occasion, a woman came into his court room because she had dumped 35 kittens in the woods at night. The judge could have sent her to jail, but he didn’t think that would really help her understand why what she had done was wrong. He had a better idea.
In this case, the judge told the woman, “How would you like to be dumped off at a metro park late at night, spend the night listening to the coyotes, listening to the raccoons around you in the dark night, and sit out there in the cold not knowing where you’re going to get your next meal, not knowing when you are going to be rescued?”
That’s right: he sentenced her to spend the night at a park. Watch the video below to hear about some more unusual punishments Cicconetti came up with as alternatives to jail time.
When Cicconetti retired, many people were sad. It seems that his unusual punishments were quite liked by his community. As one person wrote on Facebook, “Judges like him are way too far and between.”
What do you think about Cicconetti’s unusual punishments? Do you think his creative ideas hit home more than jail time? Do you think more judges should adopt his creativity and give out more unusual punishments that really fit the crime?