Court of Appeals to convene at University of Mississippi School of Law
October 16, 2023
The Mississippi Court of Appeals will convene at the University of Mississippi School of Law to hear two cases on Oct. 18.
Three-judge panels of the Court of Appeals will hear appeals at 1:30 p.m. and 3 p.m. at the Robert C. Khayat Law Center in Moot Court I, Room 2035. Each oral argument is expected to last approximately an hour with 30 minutes per side. Judges will answer questions from law students after each oral argument, but will not talk about the cases. Spectators should be seated in the courtroom 15 minutes before each proceeding.
The Court of Appeals through its Court on the Road program schedules oral arguments on college campuses and occasionally at other locations as a teaching tool to give students and the public opportunities to watch proceedings in cases on appeal. Court on the Road offers a unique learning experience for students with an interest in law, government, journalism and a variety of other fields. The general public may attend to gain a better understanding of appellate court proceedings.
Court of Appeals Chief Judge Donna Barnes of Tupelo said, “Our court is fortunate that statutes permit us to convene in places other than the state Capital. That allows anyone, especially students, to attend in person and see first-hand how the appellate judicial system works.”
“We are especially glad to sit at Oxford at the Law School as we know many of the students will one day appear before us. This will give them a preview so that they can prepare,” Chief Judge Barnes said.
Court of Appeals Judge Jim M. Greenlee of Oxford, who helped coordinate the visit to his hometown, said, “Court on the Road allows the Court of Appeals to visit different areas of the state. We appreciate the Ole Miss Law School’s hosting of our visit and supporting the Court’s hearing of oral arguments in two cases on appeal. Holding arguments at the Law School allows the law students, the University and the community to experience our system of justice in action.”
The Law School also has scheduled visits by the Court of Appeals judges to classes at Lafayette and Oxford High Schools on Wednesday morning, Oct. 18, before the afternoon oral arguments. Judge Greenlee noted that this gives local high school students the opportunity to meet and interact with judges.
The 1:30 p.m. oral argument is in the appeal of In Re The Estate of Janice Williams a/k/a Janie Williams, Deceased: Irene Williams, Administratrix v. Doris Bryant, Appeal No. 2022-CA-00630-COA. The case is an appeal of a will contest originally heard in Hinds County Chancery Court.
The 3 p.m. oral argument is in the appeal of Recardo Frazier v. State of Mississippi, Appeal No. 2022-KA-00896-COA. The case is an appeal of a criminal conviction for first degree murder. Frazier was convicted by a Coahoma County Circuit Court jury on Aug. 10, 2022, for the June 26, 2015, shooting death of Clarksdale attorney Ellis Pittman. Pittman had sued Frazier over a dispute about work Frazier had performed in construction of Pittman’s home, according to court records. Pittman was shot to death at his office in Clarksdale after a deposition in the civil suit.
Any media organization which may wish to photograph or videotape the oral arguments must file a Camera Coverage Notice. Camera Coverage Notices should be directed to Clerk of the Court Jeremy Whitmore, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, fax 601-359-2407; and to Assistant Court
Media photographers and videographers must be familiar with and follow the Rules for Electronic and Photographic Coverage of Judicial Proceedings. The camera coverage rules are available at https://courts.ms.gov/research/rules/msrulesofcourt/rules_electronicphotographic_coverage.pdf.
The oral arguments will not be broadcast via the court’s Internet website, since the Court of Appeals is convening in special sessions away from its camera-equipped courtroom.
Documents filed in each case are available to be viewed on the Mississippi Judiciary website.
The appellant’s brief filed on behalf of Irene Williams is at this link:
The appellee’s brief filed on behalf of Doris Bryant is at this link:
The appellant’s brief filed on behalf of Recardo Frazier is at this link:
The appellee’s brief filed on behalf of the State of Mississippi is at this link: