West Virginia’s highest court has selected a new chief justice to be top administrator for the state judiciary and preside at Supreme Court oral arguments for the coming year.
Justice Allen Loughry also will rule on motions to recuse judges when they have conflicts of interest and assign replacements.
He was elected to the top court four years ago for a 12-year term.
He replaces Justice Menis Ketchum as chief. Ketchum remains on the five-member court.
Loughry was an aide to Congressman Harley Staggers and later Gov. Gaston Caperton, then an assistant state attorney general who prosecuted cases. He was working as a law clerk to the Supreme Court when elected.
Loughry says justices should treat everyone fairly regardless of wealth and follow the law “rather than a political agenda.”