W.Va. Supreme Court of Appeals stops by Marshall

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The West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals took their show on the road Tuesday to the Joan C. Edwards Playhouse, where Marshall University and local high school student were able to observe three case proceedings.

The trials began at 10 a.m. with a murder case, where the defendant said the evidence against him was wrongfully obtained.

Students came to get a better understanding of the West Virginia judicial system and what they saw was a much more realistic look.

“It was really interesting. Law is an intricate process and I didn’t realize how serious they really took it until I was here in person,” said Kaylee Humphries, a Wayne County High School senior.

The Supreme Court has come to Marshall every other year during Constitution Week to teach students what the Supreme Court really does. Chief Justice Menis Ketchum said it is important to teach students about the court system and said there is no better way than teaching them in person.

“I think it certainly exposes someone to the court system,” said Justice Allen Loughry.

Loughry said he taught a class at another university and there were a number of students who had confusion about the three branches of government.

“So there is some confusion out there,” he said. “And, again, part of that is because the other two branches are political and they go out to political events, but we sit and we hear the cases, we resolve them.”

There were two other cases selected by the Supreme Court, a license revocation case after a woman was killed in a car accident and a kidnapping case. The cases were selected to interest students so that they could be engaged in the proceedings.

“I mean I don’t think students would be interested in hearing a case over an appeal of a deed,” Ketchum said. “So this week we picked a case-involving license revocation of a driver and a kidnapping and a murder case.”

By the end of the event, students seemed interested and excited to learn more.

“I think it would definitely be an interesting occupation to become a lawyer or even a chief justice, or moving up along those lines,” said Humphries. “It’d be really interesting and I think you have to be a very strong-minded and not easily bothered person to be able to do it.”

Tom Jenkins can be contacted at [email protected]

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