The West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals was rocked by scandal this past year, after their exorbitant spending was brought to light. Ultimatley, three Justices left the court with two of them being charged with felonies. Now, the court must work to regain the trust that has been lost in the high court.
Justice Tim Armstead, Justice Evan Jenkins and Justice John Hutchison all joined the court this fall. Justice Armstead says now it’s their job to not only hear cases but make sure there is transparency in the court.
“We understand that if the people are going to trust this court they need to know that we’re doing things right,” said Armstead.
Armstead isn’t expecting a clean slate for the court though and is reminded of the scandal often.
“We want to look forward but we don’t want to forget what took place, I don’t think the voters, citizens of our state want us to forget that,” said Armstead.
This year, the court was able to cut almost 15 million dollars from their budget, a move made in good faith considering next year the legislature will gain control of the budget.
“We talked with the legislature about not only the budget, but about the foster care bill about other pieces of legislation that related to the drug courts. We have to rebuild bridges in a lot of different areas, with the people of our state, with our court system internally, with the legislature,” said Armstead.