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May 23, 2007
Summit County Jurist Hears Supreme Court Case

Judge Beth WhitmoreJudge Beth Whitmore of the 9th District Court of Appeals served as a visiting judge on the Supreme Court of Ohio today and heard oral arguments in one case.

Judge Whitmore was selected by Chief Justice Thomas J. Moyer to sit in place of Justice Robert R. Cupp, who recused himself from State of Ohio v. Dennis D. Muttart, Case Nos. 2006-1293 & 2006-1488.

According to the Ohio Constitution, in the event of a recusal by a Justice, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court can select any of the 68 sitting Ohio appellate court judges to sit temporarily on the Supreme Court.

“We are pleased to have Judge Whitmore join us today,” Chief Justice Moyer said. “Her participation provides the parties in the case with a court of seven justices despite the recusal of Justice Cupp.”

The Muttart case examines the admission of hearsay testimony concerning statements made to health care professionals by a child in the course of being medically diagnosed and treated for alleged sexual abuse.

Judge Whitmore has served on the 9th District Court of Appeals since 1998. The court serves Lorain, Medina, Summit and Wayne counties and hears cases from county, municipal and common pleas courts as well as original actions in habeas corpus, mandamus, prohibition, procedendo and quo warranto.

“I am pleased to be asked to sit as a visiting judge again,” said Judge Whitmore, who last served as a visiting judge in January 2006. “Doing so is always an intellectual challenge and a pleasure.”

Judge Whitmore began her legal career in private practice with the firm Arter & Hadden LLP, where she remained for 14 years. Before obtaining her juris doctor, Judge Whitmore served in the United States Air Force as top secret control officer and commander of enlisted women at Goodfellow Airforce Base and its Tri-Service Training School for the National Security Agency. Discharged with the rank of captain, Judge Whitmore enrolled in the University of Akron's School of Law, where she currently serves as an adjunct professor on appellate advocacy. Judge Whitmore also teaches a law program in high schools throughout Summit County where she discusses the basic structure of government and the role of the judicial system.

Judge Whitmore is a member of the Akron Bar Association, Lorain County Bar Association, Medina County Bar Association, Wayne County Bar Association and the Ohio State Bar Association.

Archived video of this case and every case argued before the Supreme Court of Ohio since March 2004 is available at: www.supremecourt.ohio.gov/videostream.

For a high resolution, publication-quality photo of Judge Whitmore, please visit: http://www.supremecourt.ohio.gov/PIO/news/2007/whitmore_highres.zip

Contact: Andrea M. Strle at 614.387.9250