NEW ALBANY, Ind. (WAVE) – A southern Indiana teenager is learning a lesson the hard way after making a bad decision that got him arrested.
Linda Hublard was shocked when her son Gavin, 14, was charged with vandalism in November. After she picked him up from juvenile detention, she learned Gavin and his cousin broke into the Sellersburg pool and stole a sign. They now face fines and legal fees that Hublard said she couldn’t pay out of pocket.
“He and his cousin he was with are both good boys, it was so out of character. I was shocked,” she said. “I don’t know exactly how much but I know it’s going to be at least several hundred dollars,” she said.
Hublard tells WAVE 3 she wanted to teach her son a lesson in accountability, so she charged him with raising the money himself. Initially, Gavin called friends and family asking for odd jobs but Hublard decided to widen the search on social media.
“I wanted the punishment to fit the crime and serve a dual purpose,” she said. “It might be embarrassing but I want him to own every aspect of what he did.”
She posted to Facebook Nov. 10 asking her neighbors in New Albany if they had any paying yardwork. She received nearly 200 comments including dozens of job offers and compliments on her parenting.
“It was an abundance of positivity, like I really didn’t expect that,” she said. “It makes me feel a lot better that so many other parents say I’m doing something positive for him.”
People like Gary Sams responded to Hublard’s request. He paid Gavin $10 per hour to help him split and stack wood for his home furnace.
“I think it’s great what she’s doing. I wouldn’t necessarily call it a punishment, I think the boy’s working off what he owes,” he said.
Gavin says he appreciates his mother’s help and won’t soon forget the experience. With each new job, Hublard hopes her son learns his lesson.
“There’s always more jobs that need to be done, so he’s going to be doing jobs for a while now,” she said.
Hublard explained Gavin will continue to work until he raises enough to pay his fines and legal fees; anything extra will be donated to children in need this Christmas.