Friday, October 8, 2010

U.S. Supreme Court declines to hear Ohio case

Earlier this week, the U.S. Supreme Court denied a petition to hear an Ohio case about police searching data stored in a cell phone. While the Supreme Court of Ohio is the court of last resort for state law, sometimes our court’s decisions are appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court, especially when they concern federal constitutional rights.

It’s not uncommon for the U.S. Supreme Court to decline to hear a case. In fact, the U.S. Supreme Court receives about 10,000 petitions for a writ of certiorari each year. The Court grants and hears oral argument in about 75 to 80 cases. Those are difficult numbers to overcome to be sure.

As a comparison, our state Supreme Court receives about 2,000 requests each year to review decisions of Ohio’s appeals courts. Out of all those requests, we typically agree to hear arguments and decide about 150 cases per year. After reading these statistics, you can see why we encourage lawyers to make a compelling case to us as to why we should hear their case.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Harvard recognizes Supreme Court civic education program

We already knew our civic education program was a worthwhile endeavor, now Harvard University thinks so too. The Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation at the John F. Kennedy School of Government selected 173 programs nationwide for its inaugural Bright Ideas program as “creative government initiatives.”

Here’s what the winning application says: “The Supreme Court of Ohio Civic Education Program is dedicated to informing citizens about the judiciary, an often misunderstood branch of government, with the aim of building trust through knowledge and understanding. The initiative employs many and varied approaches including off-site court, a visitor education center, public lectures, and artwork.”

Please don’t let another school year go by without visiting our beautiful building and learning how the judicial system affects your life. You won’t regret it.