A Courtside Seat

Original Judge's Chair

The Original Judge's Chair

A Courtside Seat

By Judge Kim Hall

Have you ever watched a professional basketball game from a courtside seat?

Neither have I.  I understand that the experience is much different from that vantage point.  You see and hear the game in a way much different than those in the cheap seats. ($10 Indiana Pacers tickets at www.pacers.com.  I’ve done it many times).

To some extent, the same is true in a court of law.  The vantage point of a judge is unique, one which provides a perspective that can only be obtained from the bench.

So, what is my point?

I give you that example to introduce you to what I hope will be a monthly column on issues involving our laws, our judicial system, and how it is relevant to your life.

What’s that?  Boring you say.  Ah, but you haven’t experienced it from a “courtside” seat.

What is the purpose?  Three things:  To inform, to stimulate thought, and to offer you the chance to share your thoughts about a variety of topics.  How often do you get the chance to contribute to the administration of justice?  This will give you the opportunity to do just that.

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What should we talk about?  Possible topics:  Can I represent myself in court?   Why was I called for Jury Duty?  Why do criminal defendants have so many rights?  What factors affect an individual’s sentence?  What new state laws affect me in Starke County?  (We cannot talk about individual cases.)

The Indiana Code of Judicial Conduct encourages judges to exercise their constitutional right of free speech to, “…advance the public interest in the administration of justice in a free society.”  I hope that “A Courtside Seat” will give you a perspective into the law that you have never had before and that you may find it to be informative, thought-provoking, and, at times, even mildly entertaining.

SOMETHING TO PONDER

If you want peace, work for justice.      H. L. Mencken

Your thoughts:  judgekimhall@co.starke.in.us

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