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eighthjdcourt

Info about the Eighth Judicial District Court.

Tag Archives: Judge Eric Johnson

It’s hard to get and keep the attention of a class of fourth graders. Judge Tierra Jones and Judge Eric Johnson kept the attention of two fourth grade classes from Grant M. Bowler Elementary School in Logandale, NV and taught them some valuable lessons on the justice system when they put on a mock trial in District Court. The mini legal eagles got into their roles as judges, jurors, attorneys, witnesses and marshals in a trial to determine if legendary wizard Harry Potter was guilty of the misuse of magic. After hearing the testimony with built in hints on how courts work, the fourth grader found Potter not-guilty. The students peered into the holding cell which gave them a stark view of what happens to those who get caught in the justice system.

Two more classes from Grant M. Bowler will visit the court on Friday, Nov. 16 from 9:30 a.m. to noon.  Judge Kerry Earley in courtroom 12D  and Judge Adrianna Escobar will host the mock trials.

The mock trials are a cooperative effort between the Nevada Eighth Judicial District Court, nonprofit agency Project REAL and the school. In preparation for the student mock trials, Project REAL provides teachers lessons to convey the roles and processes of a criminal trial. The students get an immersive, real-world learning experience, with the benefit of Project Real classroom lessons to set the stage for better understanding. The students embark on their journey through the justice system with the legal terms and other information provided in the classroom sessions.

District Court Judge Doug Herndon envisioned the mock trial program. He wrote the script involving Harry Potter to provide a fun and interesting method for young students to learn about the justice system. The activities promote the importance of education, highlight potential legal careers and demonstrate the outcome of bad choices.

Project REAL, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, was founded in 2005 by Sam Lionel and Irwin Molasky to meet the challenge of teaching K-12th grade Nevada students the importance of the law. They have taught over 160,000 Nevada students about the importance of the law with the goal of preparing them to be informed, law-abiding and participating citizens through their programs Your Day in Court, Play By the Rules, REAL Drama, and Independence & You. For more information from Project REAL, please contact Program Director Mike Kamer at mkamer@projectrealnv.org, call 702.703.6529, or visit http://projectrealnv.org.

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Four fourth grade classes from Liliam Lujan Hickey Elementary School experienced justice in action at the Eighth Judicial District Court in early April. They  also got a view on where life-choices lead when they sat in on actual criminal calendars and saw judges, court employees and attorneys perform their jobs. They watched defendants in various stages of their cases, including sentencing. After viewing the calendar, students asked judges questions about  what they saw, and how and why it works that way. The Q&A session was followed by a mock trial of Harry Potter, who was charged with misappropriation of magic. The school visits are part of a new joint program between nonprofit agency Project Real, the District Court and schools.

District Court Judge Doug Herndon envisioned this mock trial program. He wrote the script to provide a fun and interesting method for young students to learn about the justice system. The activities promote the importance of education, highlight potential legal careers and demonstrate the outcome of bad choices. “This program is a good way for young students to see the legal profession in action. When they watch actual court proceedings, they see the unfortunate consequences of criminal activity,” said Judge Herndon. “The mock trials give the students a way to relate to and understand the justice system, and see career roles that they may want to consider in the future.”

Project REAL, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, was founded in 2005 by Sam Lionel and Irwin Molasky to meet the challenge of teaching K-12th grade Nevada students the importance of the law. They have taught over 160,000 Nevada students about the importance of the law with the goal of preparing them to be informed, law-abiding and participating citizens through their programs Your Day in Court, Play By the Rules, REAL Drama, and Independence & You. For more information from Project REAL, please contact Program Director Mike Kamer at mkamer@projectrealnv.org, call 702.703.6529, or visit http://projectrealnv.org.

The mock trial program is intended to contrast the view of careers in the justice system against the choice to get involved in criminal activity. This collaboration between the courts, Project Real and Hickey Elementary School involved a lot of work on the part of the judges and their departments in District Court, Project Real, and the teachers. Thanks to the many people who helped to make it come together so that the students could benefit from a real-world perspective.

 

 

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DSC_1038Effective July 1, a pilot project will begin to examine the potential benefits of centralizing the management for cases wherein a defendant has been charged with a “homicide crime,” with the intent of improving efficiency in the management and timely disposition of such cases.

It was ordered by District court Chief Judge Elizabeth Gonzalez in Administrative Order 17-05 http://www.clarkcountycourts.us/res/rules-and-orders/AO%2017-05.pdf pursuant to EDCR 1.30(b), to form a Homicide Team consisting of four district judges, with one to function as the Homicide Team Case Management Judge and three to function as Homicide Team Members. The four judges on the homicide team are: Presiding Criminal Judge Doug Herndon, Judge Valerie Adair, Judge Eric Johnson and Judge Jennifer Togliatti. The four judges will handle other criminal matters, but their civil matters have been reassigned to other judges. Pursuant to EDCR 1.30(b), the Homicide Team shall prioritize homicide crime cases over all other criminal cases in their caseloads.

A “homicide crime” case, for purposes of this order, is limited to cases involving a crime of Open Murder, First Degree Murder, Second Degree Murder, Voluntary Manslaughter and/or Involuntary Manslaughter, as those crimes are delineated in NRS 200.010 through NRS 200.260, as well as any associated offenses charged within the same case.

Chief Judge Gonzalez posted the following letter on the court website:

As reflected in Administrative Order 17-05, effective July 1, 2017, the Eighth Judicial District Court will reassign cases among several departments as follows:

  1. All civil cases in Departments 3, 9, 20, and 21, except for certain cases specifically designated for retention by the aforementioned departments, shall be randomly and equitably reassigned to judicial departments carrying civil caseloads.
  2. All “homicide crime” cases, as defined in Administrative Order 17-05, except for those currently assigned to Departments 3, 9, 20 or 21 shall be reassigned to Department 3 for distribution to the Homicide Team.

In the interest of fiscal and environmental conservation the list of cases affected by the upcoming reassignment is being made available to you electronically via the link labeled 2017 Homicide Team Case Reassignments posted under Court News at http://www.clarkcountycourts.us/general/news Please visit the link to determine whether your case will be affected.

Current trial dates will be maintained unless rescheduled by the receiving department.  Please review the posted administrative order and the Odyssey electronic case management system for further specifics on the aforementioned transfers and to confirm upcoming hearing dates.  In the event you are eligible pursuant to Supreme Court Rule 48.1, you may exercise a peremptory challenge as a result of your case having been reassigned.

The Court greatly appreciates your participation in accommodating this reassignment.  Please do not hesitate to contact Assistant Court Administrator Timothy Andrews at 702-671-3312 should you have any questions.

http://www.clarkcountycourts.us/res/news/reassignment-homicide-2017.pdf

 

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Hundreds of bright young  students with anxious parents and other supporters impressed an all-star lineup of justice professionals and officials who judged the We the People Nevada State finals competition. We the People is a program intended to foster student understanding of American democracy, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

Students from 12 high schools, who won regional competitions throughout the state of Nevada, including eight from the Clark County School District (CCSD), converged on the West Career and Technical Academy for the Nevada State Finals competition and wowed the judges with their presentations. It’s round-robin, debate-style competition, run in a manner similar to a sports tournament. Eighth Judicial District Court Judge Elissa Cadish moderated the event and presented the trophies and awards. Former U.S. Senator Richard Bryan received a standing ovation from the sea of students and families for his keynote speech on democracy and the Constitution at the closing ceremony. The top team from this event will advance to the national finals set for April in Washington, D.C.

The State Bar of Nevada hosts/sponsors the competition along with the Clark County School District, Washoe County School District, Nevada Humanities, Nevada Embracing Law Related Education and the justice professionals that make it all work.

First Place – Reno High School – 1,329

Second Place – Incline High School – 1,301

Third Place – Southwest Career and Technical Academy – 1,296

Fourth Place – Clark High School – 1,271

Fifth Place – Reed High School – 1,266

Sixth Place – West Career and Technical Academy – 1,201

Seventh Place – Canyon Springs High School – 1,195

Eighth Place – College of Southern Nevada High School East – 1,182

Ninth Place – Faith Lutheran Middle School and High School – 1,180

Tenth Place – Las Vegas Academy of the Arts – 1,134

Eleventh Place – Silverado High School – 1,107

Twelfth Place – ATECH – 1,105

The Results of the Unit Awards were:

Unit I Award Third Place Clark High School; Second Place Reno High School; First Place Reed High School

Unit II Award Third Place Clark High School; Second Place Incline High School; First Place Reno High School

Unit III Award Third Place Incline High School; Second Place Incline High School; First Place Southwest Career and Technical Academy

Unit IV Award Third Place Reno High School; Second Place West Career and Technical Academy; First Place Incline High School

Unit V Award Third Place Canyon Springs High School tied with Incline High School; Second Place Reno High School; First Place Southwest Career and Technical Academy

Unit VI Award College of Southern Nevada East High School; Second Place Reno High School Third Place Tie between Clark High School and Southwest Career and Technical Academy.

There was  an all-star lineup of justice professionals and officials who volunteered time to judge the competition including: Professor Fred Lokken, Judge Elliott Sattler, former Assemblyman Marcus Conklin, Professor Rachel Anderson, Judge Andrew Gordon, Judge Cynthia Leung, Judge Gloria Sturman, Professor Sondra Cosgrove, Judge Scott Pearson, Judge Lynne Simons, Daniel Schiess, Esq., Professor David Tanenhaus, Professor Michael Green, Judge Philip Pro (Ret.), Justice Michael Douglas, Andrew Lingenfelter, Justice Nancy Saitta (Ret.), Mark Simons, Esq., Kimberly Maxson-Rushton, Esq., Magistrate Judge George Foley, Superintendent Pat Skorkowsky, Franny Forsman, Esq., Judge Richard Boulware and Judge Mike Nakagawa.

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He knows if you’ve been bad or good, and that’s a problem when he’s wearing a black robe. That was a lesson learned by Ebenezer Scrooge at the Howard D. McKibben Inn of Court December meeting/training in courtroom 15D. Scrooge was put on trial for misdeeds and when he tried to snow Judge Clause he got slammed by Santa’s entries in the naughty book. The jolly judge called out others for past misdeeds and had a bit of fun ribbing justices and judges in attendance. Ultimately, he wiped the slate clean for lawyers who hadn’t been so nice, but made it to the meeting.

Those in the gallery got a few lessons on the law surrounding issues of the Scrooge case. The trial was a fun way to review legal tips. After Scrooge got probation, Hope for Prisoners founder Jon Ponder gave a presentation on the program that provides mentors to recently released prisoners to help them re-integrate after incarceration. He was then honored by the Howard D. McKibben Inn of Court.

The mission of the Inns of Court is to inspire the legal community to advance the rule of law by achieving the highest level of professionalism through example, education and mentoring.  Hope for Prisoners is a program that shares a similar mission in helping men, women and young adults successfully enter the workforce, the community and to successfully re-unite with their families. Hope for Prisoners is a non-profit organization that truly makes an impact in helping individuals in become a productive member of society.

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