September 2, 2014

Medina
Showers
72°F

Mother of ‘bully’ gets jailtime for punching woman in face

MEDINA — A Brunswick resident found guilty Thursday of attacking a woman for calling her son a bully will spend a month in jail.

In addition to jail time, Medina Municipal Court Judge Dale H. Chase sentenced Connie L. Edmiston, 42, to two years’ probation and fined her $500. She also was ordered to have no contact with the victim.

Connie L. Edmiston, 42, of Brunswick, listens with her attorney, Tim Lutz, to the prosecution's case Thursday at her trial. Edmiston was found guilty of assault and will spend at least a month in jail. She was accused of punching another mother in the face for calling her son a bully. (GAZETTE PHOTO BY NICK GLUNT)

If she violates the terms of her probation, she will have to spend another five months in jail.

About 7 p.m. Thursday, after deliberating 1½ hours, a four-man and four-woman jury found Edmiston guilty of assault, a first-degree misdemeanor.

During opening arguments Thursday, Brunswick Prosecutor J. Matthew Lanier told the jury that Edmiston punched another Brunswick parent in the face, 45-year-old Carolyn Smilor, while they were picking up their children Jan. 22 at Willetts Middle School.

Lanier said the attack occurred because Smilor told Edmiston’s 13-year-old son in September to stop bullying other children.

“Have you ever heard the phrase ‘the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree?’ ” Lanier asked the jury. “That’s exactly what this case is about.”

Lanier said three witnesses saw Edmiston approach Smilor’s PT Cruiser outside Willetts, shouting about “calling her son a bully.”

Smilor said she rolled down the window and that’s when Edmiston punched her.

Smilor, who has multiple sclerosis, was taken to the hospital because a blow to the head could have been fatal, Lanier said.

Another parent said he followed Edmiston to get her license plate number and took a photo of the plate at a red light. He said Edmiston got out of her car and yelled at him about following her.

He said he took a photo of her, which was shown in court.

Lanier said Edmiston’s husband had followed Smilor from the middle school twice in the months prior to the punching incident.

The second time, Smilor said he only stopped following when she pulled into the Brunswick Police Department parking lot.

Edmiston’s attorney, Tim Lutz, said during his opening arguments that “in order for you to convict Connie, the state must show proof that there was an injury.”

“There is no proof,” Lutz said.

Lutz said Edmiston did approach Smilor that day to talk to her about calling her son a bully but never attacked Smilor.

Instead, Lutz said, Smilor spit in Edmiston’s face.

“And she didn’t want to take that, so Connie got in her truck and drove away,” Lutz said.

He said Edmiston’s son was bothered by Smilor’s accusation “because he’s not a bully.”

Contact reporter Nick Glunt at (330) 721-4048 or nglunt@medina-gazette.com.