Court of Appeals schedules oral arguments at University of Southern Mississippi campus

February 27, 2007

The Mississippi Court of Appeals will hear oral arguments at the University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg on March 7 as part of the court’s commitment to education.

Members of the Court occasionally travel to locations outside Jackson for oral argument presentations specially scheduled to accommodate college audiences. Another panel hearing is scheduled for April 17 on the University of Mississippi campus in Oxford.

The March 7 oral arguments will be heard in Room 218 at the Thad Cochran Center on campus. At 11:15 a.m., the Court will hear arguments in the case of Keys v. State, a Perry County criminal case involving an appeal from a conviction of assault on a law enforcement officer. At 1:15 p.m., the Court will hear arguments in the case of Quinn v. Broadwater, a Harrison County civil case involving a personal injury claim.

The three-judge panel scheduled to hear the case is made up of Presiding Judge Joe Lee and Judges David Ishee and Virginia Carlton.

Presiding Judge Lee said, “While the court’s duty is to hear and decide appeals, we as judges look for opportunities to also educate the public about the workings of the judicial system. Scheduling oral arguments on campus provides an opportunity for students to observe an appellate level court.”

The proceedings are open to the public.

The March 7 oral arguments will not be broadcast via the Internet, since the Court of Appeals is convening a special session away from its camera-equipped courtroom. However, an audio-video recording of the proceedings on CD may be obtained from the office of the Supreme Court Clerk afterwards.

The Mississippi Legislature created the Court of Appeals in 1994 to speed appeals and relieve a backlog of cases before the Supreme Court. The 10-member Court of Appeals began hearing cases in 1995.

The Supreme Court assigns cases to the Court of Appeals. The Supreme Court may accept or decline to review decisions of the Court of Appeals.

The Court of Appeals reviews trial court decisions in cases such as domestic relations, child custody, wills, real property, criminal convictions, contracts, insurance, medical malpractice, personal injury and property damage. The Court of Appeals also hears Workers Compensation Commission and other administrative agency appeals.