[Recently] the Georgia Court of Appeals presided over three cases in front of over 500 high school students in Fayette County. It was an incredible learning opportunity for our high school students to see their government in action and witness a live judicial proceeding.
I want to express gratitude to the Georgia Court of Appeals, Fayette County Board of Education, Fayette County Sheriff’s Office, and the Fayette County Bar Association for making this session at Whitewater High School possible.
I would like to thank Presiding Judge Carla W. McMillian, Judge Anne E. Barnes, and Judge Amanda H. Mercier for agreeing to have this session heard in Fayette County. Thanks to Chief Judge Christopher Edwards for jointly extending the invitation to the Court of Appeals.
Sheriff Barry Babb and his team (Maj. Brian Eubanks, Capt. Jody Thomas, Lt. Toby Daly, Agent Kevin Zaj, and Sgt. Angel Santos) provided all the logistics and security for the Court of Appeals session.
Superintendent Jody Barrow, Dep. Superintendent Mike Sanders, Sam Sweat, Audrey Toney, Whitewater High School Principal Steve Cole, and Whitewater High School Assistant Principal J.P. Ward should be commended for their work.
The students were well-informed of the court process and were well-behaved during the session.
Finally, I want to thank the Fayette County Bar Association under the leadership of Jordan Jewkes. Along with attorney Kyle King, members of the Fayette County Bar Association visited the schools in the weeks prior to the event to go over the case briefs with the students.
The volunteer attorneys are David Ballard, Clint Barbour, Daniel Hiatt, Richard Hobbs, Jeff Holt, Terence Malloy, Cindy Manning, Nailah Grant McFarlane, Stephen Ott, Holly Peace, and Alice Rodriguez.
It was a great day for the students of Fayette County.
Jason B. Thompson, judge
State Court of Fayette County