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Bar News - November 19, 2014

NH Supreme Court Travels to Salem High School


Appellate defender Stephanie Hausman argues her case before the Supreme Court at Salem High School’s On the Road event Oct. 16.

Hundreds of students from Salem, Pelham, Windham and Londonderry high schools, as well as Pinkerton Academy in Derry, had a rare opportunity to see the New Hampshire Supreme Court in action in a school setting last month.

For the sixteenth year, New Hampshire Supreme Court On the Road brought two sets of oral arguments to a school auditorium – this year, Salem High School hosted the event, which marks the only time the court convenes outside the Supreme Court building in Concord.

At the Oct. 16 event in Salem, the court heard oral arguments in the cases of State v. Elizabeth Cloutier and State v. Taneal Broadus, criminal cases involving a confession and a motion to suppress, respectively.

After the oral arguments (by Assistant Appellate Defender Thomas Barnard and Assistant Attorney General Elizabeth Woodcock in Cloutier and Deputy Chief Appellate Defender Stephanie Hausman and Senior Assistant Attorney General Stephen Fuller in Broadus), the students had an opportunity to ask questions of the lawyers and the justices.

In response to their questions, the justices discussed their respective hobbies outside the law. Dalianis said she has an interest in photography, while Justice Robert Lynn is a master marksman, and Justice James Bassett is a farmer. Justice Gary Hicks is a patron of the arts, and Justice Carol Ann Conboy is spending a lot of her spare time house-hunting these days.

Other students wondered how and why the justices came to sit on the Supreme Court bench, what the court does if the justices don’t agree, and how they felt when they first put on the robe.

“The robe, to me, represents our system,” Justice Conboy said. “And I have the responsibility, when I put this robe on, to follow the rule of law.”

The NH Supreme Court justices answer questions from students.

Students line up to ask questions of the lawyers and justices.

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