Court of Appeals to visit Mississippi Valley State University Nov. 10
The Mississippi Court of Appeals will convene on the campus of Mississippi Valley State University on Nov. 10 at 1 p.m. to hear oral arguments in a criminal appeal.
The proceeding will be held in Auditorium 103 of the Sutton Administration Building. The address of the university is 14000 Highway 82 West, Itta Bena.
A three-judge panel will hold court as part of its Court on the Road educational program for students and the public. Throughout the year, the Jackson-based court hears a few cases on college campuses around the state. Presiding Judge Tyree Irving said, “The Court on the Road program helps educate students and the public about appellate court proceedings and gives appellate judges an opportunity to answer questions about how the court operates.”
Judges talk with students after the oral arguments, although they don’t talk about the pending cases. Having an opportunity to see the court at work provides a valuable learning experience for students who may have an interest in careers in law as well as those who simply want to better understand how each branch of government functions.
Watching a live court proceeding may dispel misconceptions about how the justice system works. There is little resemblance to what one sees in law dramas on television. Lawyers’ arguments and judges’ questions may be technical. Don’t expect a dramatic conclusion. Judges will take the matter under advisement and render a written decision later.
People wishing to watch the oral arguments are asked to be in their seats 15 minutes before the proceeding is scheduled to begin.
The oral arguments will not be broadcast via the court’s Internet web site, since the Court of Appeals is convening a special session away from its camera-equipped courtroom.
The case to be heard involves the criminal appeals of Trevontae Johnson, Meekco Johnson and Isaac Johnson, who were tried and convicted in Washington County Circuit Court of charges related to an April 8, 2013, home invasion in Greenville, according to court records. The case is styled as Trevontae Johnson, Meekco Johnson a/k/a Meeko Johnson and Isaac Johnson v. State of Mississippi, cause number 2015-KA-0235-COA.
Trevontae Johnson and Isaac Johnson were each convicted and sentenced to a total of 93 years in prison: 25 years for burglary of a dwelling with intent to terrorize, 38 years for armed robbery and 30 years for kidnapping, with the sentences running consecutively.
Meekco Johnson was convicted and sentenced to 103 years in prison: 10 years as a felon in possession of a firearm, 25 years for burglary of a dwelling with intent to terrorize, 38 years for armed robbery and 30 years for kidnapping, with the sentences running consecutively.
Attorneys for the appellants are Tucker Gore of Greenwood, representing Trevontae Johnson; Hunter N. Aikens of the Indigent Appeals Division of the Office of State Public Defender, representing Meekco Johnson; and David Neil McCarty of Jackson, representing Isaac Johnson. Special Assistant Attorney General Billy L. Gore represents the state.
Any media organization which may wish to photograph or videotape the arguments must file a Camera Coverage Notice. Camera Coverage Notices should be directed to Clerk of the Court Muriel Ellis, fax 601-359-2407, and to Assistant Court Administrator Camille Evans, fax 601-576-4708. The Camera Coverage Notice form is at https://courts.ms.gov/forms/camnotice.pdf.
Photographers and videographers must be familiar with and follow the Rules for Electronic and Photographic Coverage of Judicial Proceedings. The camera coverage rules are available at http://courts.ms.gov/rules/msrulesofcourt/