West Virginia Supreme Court

Marcus Constantino (@AMTino) / Charleston Daily Mail

The West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals has denied a request to temporarily suspend the law license of Kanawha County Prosecutor Mark Plants and has upheld a circuit court decision. That decision disqualified him from a prosecuting certain types of cases pending an outcome in criminal proceeding against him.

Plants is charged with misdemeanor domestic battery and violating a protection order after beating his son with a leather belt in February.

Nicholas County
Tim Kiser (User: Malepheasant) / wikimedia Commons

  A three-judge panel has been appointed to hear a petition seeking the removal of all three Nicholas County commissioners.

State Supreme Court Chief Justice Robin Davis named Senior Status Judge Frank E. Jolliffe, Monongalia County Circuit Judge Philip D. Gaujot and Third Judicial Circuit Judge Timothy L. Sweeney to hear the petition.

The State Journal reports that the petition alleges the commissioners illegally changed the form of county government and violated the state's open government laws when they hired Roger Beverage as county manager.

Marcus Constantino (@AMTino) / Charleston Daily Mail

The West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals heard arguments Monday over whether to temporarily revoke the law license of a county prosecutor charged with domestic battery.

Kanawha County Prosecuting Attorney Mark Plants is facing the misdemeanor charge after State Police say he hit his step-son multiple times with a leather belt in February, leaving bruises.

The state Office of Disciplinary Counsel alleges Plants’ license should be revoked until his criminal proceedings are completed because he has violated ethics rules.  

  The West Virginia Supreme Court says a Kanawha County woman convicted in a truancy case can't be both fined and ordered to perform community service. The court says a Kanawha County judge also erred when he placed Beth Bennett on 90 days' probation. In an opinion issued Tuesday, the court says there are two sentencing alternatives for first-offense truancy. They are a fine, or requiring the adult to accompany the child to school.

Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia

The West Virginia Supreme Court has reinstated a man's first-degree murder convictions for the 1982 slayings of two people in Marion County.

The court ruled that the Ohio County Circuit Court erred when it granted Philip Reese Bush a new trial last year.

Bush was convicted in 1983 of killing Charles Dale Goff and Kathleen Jane Williams. His trial was moved to Ohio County because of pretrial publicity.

Bush's appeal argued that one of the trial court's jury instructions denied him due process.

WDTV/5 News

The West Virginia Supreme Court has sided with the state Public Service Commission on a decision to allow the sale of a Harrison County power plant.

The PSC approved the sale of Harrison Power Station in October 2013. In the deal, Mon Power would obtain about 80 percent ownership of the plant from Allegheny Energy Supply and become its sole owner.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Supreme Court Justices Benjamin and Loughry speak about the balance of power in state government, the public campaign finance program, and partisan elections bringing them to their office. A Wheeling native who is a doctoral student of theology will be the lead author of a new Pastoral letter in the works.  Division of Natural Resources officials are trying to stop Columnaris Disease from spreading to more waters and aquatic wildlife in the state. 

Marcus Constantino (@AMTino) / Charleston Daily Mail

Kanawha County prosecutor Mark Plants says his office doesn't have a conflict investigating domestic violence cases involving children.
Plants is facing a domestic battery charge. He's accused of hitting one of his sons more than 10 times with a leather belt on Feb. 22.

A long-running legal battle between two coal companies is headed for trial in Virginia.
The Charleston Gazette  reports an April 21 trial is set in Grundy, Va., for a lawsuit filed by Hugh Caperton against Massey Energy.

Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia

The state Supreme Court has ruled that government agencies can charge an hourly fee for locating public documents requested under the West Virginia Freedom of Information Act.
The court ruled 4-1 in a decision released Thursday.
The justices overturned a Kanawha County circuit judge's ruling that said the city of Nitro didn't have the authority to enact an ordinance to establish an hourly search fee for documents.

Harry Schaefer, Environmental Protection Agency / U.S. National Archives and Records Administration

The U.S. Supreme Court will not hear an appeal of Monsanto Co.'s massive settlement with thousands of West Virginia residents.

In an order Monday, justices said they would not review the $93 million settlement reached in the lawsuit. The Charleston Gazette said that means thousands of Nitro-area residents are closer to receiving medical monitoring and having their property cleaned up.

Parking Meter
Dave Mistich / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

A Charleston attorney went to the West Virginia Supreme Court to contest a $25 parking ticket.
He lost.
Timothy N. Barber argued he was improperly ticketed for leaving his vehicle in a no-parking zone while he delivered a prescription to a colleague. He left the vehicle idling while he delivered the prescription, and contended he was not parking but unloading, which is permitted in the spot he parked.

The Law Works - Challenges facing the Courts

Apr 1, 2014

We live in a complex world. We deal with new challenges every day. New technologies. New relationships. New ideas. And so do our courts. Dan Ringer and former West Virginia Supreme Court Chief Justice Richard Neely will talk about the challenges facing our courts, on this episode of The Law Works.

West Virginia Regional Jail & Correctional Facility Authority

The West Virginia Supreme Court has dismissed the state Regional Jail Authority from a lawsuit that alleged a male correctional officer repeatedly raped a female inmate.
The court says the authority is entitled to immunity because the woman failed to provide any evidence that the officer's alleged actions occurred within the scope of his employment.

Flickr / davidwilson1949

Two West Virginia government agencies have been accused of ignoring steps that could have taken to prevent the Jan. 9 chemical spill which tainted the drinking water supply for residents in nine counties.

The Charleston Gazette reports an emergency petition was filed Friday with the state Supreme Court on behalf of two nonprofit groups and two Charleston-area residents.

Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia

A Fairmont attorney is days away from making judicial history in West Virginia.