FRANKFORT, Ky., Oct. 5, 2004 ¾ There were 120 Circuit Court, Family Court and senior status judges who took part in the 2004 Circuit Judges’ Judicial College offered by the Kentucky Court of Justice for circuit judges throughout the state. The conference took place Sept. 13-15 at Lake Cumberland State Park in Russell Springs, Ky.
“Circuit judges must constantly monitor how new legislation, emerging technology, legal issues and social trends affect the cases that come before them,” said Jefferson County Circuit Judge James Shake, president of the Kentucky Circuit Judges’ Association. “The annual college gives judges several days away from daily pressures to prepare for the issues they're certain to face in their courtrooms.”
The 2004 college was designed to update judges on issues critical to the Kentucky judiciary. Among the topics on the agenda were the relationship between judges and Commonwealth’s attorneys and county attorneys; the potential impact of a U.S. Supreme Court ruling on judicial campaign communications; handling hearsay evidence; determining the authenticity of electronic evidence; mental health issues in criminal cases and ex parte communication.
Presenters included Judges Shake, Lisabeth Abramson, Julia Adams, Gregory Bartlett, Eddy Coleman, Roger Crittenden, Craig Clymer, Kevin Garvey, Steven Jaeger, Rick Johnson, Cletus Maricle, Robert McGinnis, Stephen Ryan, Jeffrey Walson and Barry Willett. The group also heard from Judge David Stosberg of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of Kentucky.
Circuit Court is the court of general jurisdiction and hears all criminal matters involving more than $4,000. It has jurisdiction over capital offenses and felonies, dissolution of marriage, adoption, termination of parental rights, land disputes and contested probate cases. Family Court became a division of Circuit Court when the Family Court Amendment passed in the 2002 general election. The Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC) in Frankfort is the administrative arm of the Kentucky Court of Justice and supports the activities of nearly 3,400 court personnel, including the elected offices of justices, judges and circuit court clerks. The AOC provides ongoing training and education to the state’s judges.