West Virginia Supreme Court halts impeachment trials

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — West Virginia’s Supreme Court has effectively halted the legislature’s remaining efforts to impeach the state’s justices as a violation of the separation of powers doctrine.

A panel of acting justices ordered that its decision to stop Justice Margaret Workman’s impeachment hearing also applies to retired Justice Robin Davis and suspended Justice Allen Loughry, who had petitioned the court to intervene.

The court ruled earlier this month that the Senate doesn’t have jurisdiction to pursue its impeachment trial of Workman. The Senate postponed Workman’s trial after the presiding judge didn’t show up following the court ruling.

Loughry was convicted of 11 criminal counts in federal court, including using state cars and gas cards for his personal benefit, making false statements, mail fraud and witness tampering.

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This story has been corrected to show that the presiding judge didn’t show up for the impeachment trial.

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Information from: WCHS-TV, http://www.wchstv.com

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