• 50°

Students meet with attorneys to learn about justice system

Upperclassmen from several county high schools chatted with judges and attorneys Tuesday to mark the local observance of Law Day.

Wednesday, May 02, 2001

Upperclassmen from several county high schools chatted with judges and attorneys Tuesday to mark the local observance of Law Day.

Held May 1 – May Day – the observance of Law Day serves as an ideal way to let young people know about the justice system, Lawrence County Common Pleas Court Judge Frank McCown said.

"Over the years, the (Lawrence County) Bar Association has done different things," McCown said, adding that visits to schools and other activities have been common.

Tuesday, students from Dawson-Bryant, St. Joseph and Fairland high schools visited the Common Pleas courtrooms. Attorneys talked about everything from the history of Law Day and what happens when people under 18 come to court to who’s responsible if you have an accident driving drunk.

"We think of Law Day as a May Day celebration," McCown said. "We’re happy these particular schools came in and appreciated our heritage and the role of the law and the justice system."

A proclamation read by Ironton Mayor Bob Cleary declared it Law Day and asked all to "celebrate freedom" because the law and the legislative-judicial system remains "the engine of freedom." Tuesday marked the 44th observance of Law Day across the country.

Juvenile judge David Payne, who helped answer students’ questions during sessions with attorneys, called it a very timely celebration.

Students need to think about the consequences of their actions now, as prom season begins, he said, echoing comments from attorneys.

But Law Day is more than that, it’s an opportunity for students to come to face to face with their judicial system, Payne said.

"They hear from the judges and attorneys about issues of law and are encouraged to appreciate the impact of the law on their lives each day," he said.