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Appellate Court
On Circuit Program


 

Upcoming Visits

Date Location
May 2, 2014 Kingswood Oxford School
West Hartford

History of the Program
The Connecticut Appellate Court, began its “On Circuit” program in 1996, when it visited Quinnipiac College School Of Law. The Court modeled this program after the Supreme Court On Circuit program established by the Supreme Court in 1986. The purpose of this program is to provide the public, especially students, with a better understanding of the appellate process. Key to this goal was the recognition that although the Court’s “home” courtroom in Hartford was always open, visitors rarely had a full understanding of what transpired there. 
 
Since 1996, the Appellate Court has traveled to high schools and universities throughout the state.

 

Description of the Program
The Appellate Court On Circuit program provides high school and college students the opportunity to observe oral arguments in appellate cases. Each year, the court selects a location where arguments will be heard.

The program’s goal is simple: To educate students and residents about the roles and responsibilities of the appellate system.

Volunteer attorneys often prepare synopses of the assigned appeals and meet with students before the day’s oral arguments to discuss the issues to be argued before the court. Local bar associations and teaching staff are invaluable during this process, and provide the students with the background they need to both understand the appellate process and the cases that will be argued.
 
Typically, two cases are argued on the day of the event. After each argument, the attorneys who argued the case usually participate in a question-and-answer session with the students. Volunteer attorneys often work with professors and teachers to facilitate the sessions.

Publishing the opinon takes time because it requires careful analysis of the law. When released, the decision may be accessed through the Advance Release Opinions page on the Judicial Branch website. 

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What Happens After a School is Selected?
Once the preliminary arrangements have been made, the Court works with the school and the local bar association to arrange for volunteer attorneys to visit the school. The attorneys typically discuss the cases with the students, and provide an overview of the Connecticut court system. The court staff also works with the facilities department at the school to transform the location, for example, the school auditorium, into a courtroom for the day.

Circuit Tips and Rules

  • Security is provided by the Judicial Branch’s judicial marshals. The following items may not be brought into the courtroom: bladed or pointed items, weapons, food and beverages. To facilitate the screening process, it is recommended that guests not bring briefcases, backpacks or bags.
  • The public may attend the arguments.
  • Visitors are expected to conduct themselves appropriately during the arguments, that is, no talking or creating disruptions.
  • Members of the public may not videotape, photograph or audiotape the proceedings.

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Recent Cases Heard On Circuit - These links connect to selected cases that the judges have heard and decided as part of the program:

State v. Marshal
Westhill High School, Stamford, October 25, 2011
Non-legal Summary
Decision

Patrick Wood v. Club, LLC, et all
Westhill High School, Stamford, October 25, 2011
Non-legal Summary
Decision

State v. Holloway
Kent School, May 18, 2009
Non-legal Summary
Decision

State v. Bareis
Kent School, May 18, 2009
Non-legal Summary
Decision

State v. Gainey
Bassick High School, April 30, 2009 
Non-legal Summary
Decision

Swanson v. Groton
Bassick High School, April 30, 2009 
Non-legal Summary
Decision
 
State v. Barnes
Norwich Free Academy, October 22, 2008
Non-legal Summary
Decision

Costanzo v. Gray
Norwich Free Academy, October 22, 2008
Non-legal Summary
Decision
 
State v. Khuth
University of New Haven, September 24, 2008
Non-legal Summary
Decision

State v. Walters
University of New Haven, September 24, 2008
Non-legal Summary
Decision 

Murphy v. Lord Thompson Manor
Wilby High School, November 28, 2007 
Non-legal Summary
Decision


   
Sokaitis v. Bakaysa
Wilby High School, November 28, 2007 
Non-legal Summary
Decision 

State v. Arroyo
Manchester Community College, April 19, 2007 
Non-legal Summary
Decision

State v. Etienne 
Manchester Community College, April 19, 2007 
Non-legal Summary
Decision
State v. Russell
Ansonia High School, October 27, 2006 
Non-legal Summary
Decision

State v. Collins
Ansonia High School, October 27, 2006 
Non-legal Summary
Decision
 
State v. Santiago
Wilbur Cross High School, October 12, 2006 
Non-legal Summary
Decision

State v. Wells
Wilbur Cross High School, October 12, 2006 
Non-legal Summary
Decision
 
State v. Fasano
Western Connecticut State University, October 28, 2004
Non-legal Summary
Decision

Raudat v. Leary
Western Connecticut State University, October 28, 2004
Non-legal Summary
Decision

State v. DiPaolo
Western Connecticut State University, October 28, 2004
Non-legal Summary
Decision
 

 

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