MANCHESTER, Ind. – Area residents will get a chance to witness the Indiana justice system in action – and ask questions of the judges – when the Court of Appeals of Indiana visits North Manchester at 3:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 12.
Manchester University is hosting “Appeals on Wheels,” when the appellate judges hear oral arguments in an actual case in venues around the state. After the hearing, the judges and attorneys will take questions from students and community members. The hearing on the Lake Superior Court case will be held in the upper MU Union.
“The program is a wonderful civics lesson learned first-hand,” says Leonard Williams, MU professor of political science. “Not only do we get to see the practice of oral argument, but the judges will answer questions and help explain the judicial process.”
The Indiana Court of Appeals usually hears cases in written form at the Indiana State House, but when an appeal includes an oral argument, the Court of Appeals often takes to the road.
The Manchester University site case is Scott v. State. Scott, who pleaded guilty to multiple felonies, including reckless homicide, is appealing the trial court’s imposition of consecutive sentences constituted. He is represented by attorney Scott King of Merrillville, Ind., who specializes in appeals. Deputy Attorney General Aaron J. Spolarich of Indianapolis represents the state.
Hearing the case are three judges: Cale J. Bradford of Marion County, Paul D. Mathias of Allen County and Terry A. Crone of St. Joseph County.
Both King and Spolarich have 20 minutes to present their arguments. Those who attend are asked to respect the court process and not interrupt the hearing. The bailiff will call the court to order and the case will proceed as if in a courtroom. The judges will robe for the hearing. Admission is free; no reservations are needed.