Category Archives: Morgantown

WVU Students: Tips for Suspension and Expulsion Hearings

In a recent article featured in The Huffington Post, the author wrote about West Virginia University by stating, “Students and fans at one of the top party schools in the country won a big football game Saturday. So they lit some fires and flipped a car.”

Unfortunately for the West Virginia University community, the idea of students who love to set fires and flip over cars has become almost a tradition of sorts. What many students and their parents may not know, however, is that a student from West Virginia University who participates in these activities may face suspension or expulsion from school. This outcome is life-changing as suspension or expulsion may affect your ability to finish your college degree or secure gainful employment.

Student Disciplinary Hearings – Suspension and Expulsion Hearings

If a student faces suspension or expulsion, the student faces a hearing panel organized by the Office of Student Conduct to determine what action the University is going to take against the student. The hearing panel consists of both faculty and students, and the hearing panel serves as both judge and jury in the matter. The accused student is given an opportunity to present opening and closing statements, testify on his/her own behalf, call and question witnesses, and introduce evidence. If you are a student facing this situation, here are some common sense types for preparing for the hearing:

1) Take responsibility for your actions.

2) Be prepared to explain to the hearing panel your plan for changing your behavior in the future, and how the decision of the hearing panel will affect your future.

3) Be prepared to explain the hearing panel why you are proud to be a Mountaineer, and why it is meaningful for you to be able to graduate from West Virginia University.

4) Provide the hearing panel with character references either by submitting letters of reference to the Office of Student Conduct prior to the hearing, or calling a witness on your behalf at the hearing to talk about your good character.

5) Read the possible sanctions listed in the University Student Conduct Code, and be prepared to suggest sanctions that you think would best help you and be appropriate in the situation.

During hearings for suspension or expulsion, students are entitled to have a lawyer appear on their behalf at the Student Conduct Hearing. Because these hearings involve opening and closing statements, the introduction of evidence, questioning of witnesses, and statements by the accused student — all things present in a court hearing or trial — you may be best served by retaining counsel to assist you throughout the hearing process. Likewise, if the hearing panel has issued a ruling that you do not agree with, you have the right to appeal and you may be best served by seeking the counsel of an attorney to assist you in this process.

Should you face an upcoming suspension or expulsion hearing at West Virginia University, please feel free to contact the attorneys at Adams Legal Group, PLLC,  (304) 381-2166 for assistance.

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by | November 1, 2013 · 12:08 pm

Welcome Back WVU Students

West Virginia University and Morgantown, WV saw an influx of 30,000 or so students, as the 2012-2013 WVU school year gets underway. It is always an exciting time around Morgantown, as most businesses, the city and the University are bustling with activity and commerce. It is also an anxious and exciting time for students, some of whom have left the confines and patriarchal control of their parents home for the first time. As this freedom meets with ample opportunities to explore this great city of Morgantown, WV, we at Adams Legal Group, PLLC hope that most of the new students find constructive outlets for this freedom and to burn off the stress and anxiety of all of the new challenges faced under these conditions.

Unfortunately, the reality sometimes becomes that some students take this new freedom and find opportunities for anxiety- and stress-relief in drinking and partying, instead of burning it off through a good long hike up at Coopers’ Rock in this gorgeous late-Summer & Fall weather. As WVU students bustled into Morgantown WV last weekend, unfortunately the WVU police, the Morgantown City police and the Monongalia County Sheriffs office was confronted with a bustle of activity and arrests. Hundreds of arrests have been made in the past week, already, mostly for public intoxication, obstruction, underage drinking, DUIs, and possession charges. While it is great to be social and find different outlets for social engagement and stress relief, we urge students to exercise prudence in moderating their behavior within legal limits. Keep Morgantown safe for you, your fellow students, and all the members of this great city – don’t drink and drive, moderate your drinking within reasonable limits, be respectful of establishments, other patrons and law enforcement.

IF you are one of the unfortunate WVU students to find yourself in trouble with law enforcement and charged with one of the above offenses – we at Adams Legal Group, PLLC can help! CALL US TODAY for your free consultation at (304) 381-2166 or visit us at Morgantown Criminal Lawyers for WVU Students

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Filed under Criminal Law, Current Events, DUI/DWI, General, Legal Services, Morgantown, West Virginia, WVU

Morgantown Traffic Woes – A Grim Reminder of the Dangers of Drinking and Driving

Morgantown, WV residents are already starting to notice the impacts on our roadways, as a result of the funeral procession for Monongalia County deputy sheriff Sgt. Michael T. May; however, this is a time to reflect on a terrible loss and to remember a fallen officer

Morgantown’s geography (and possibly planning or lack thereof, which is a subject for a later date) has yielded notoriously constrained roadways. Anyone who has found themselves on the Mileground at 5:00 on a Friday, or trying to get anywhere on a WVU football game day knows that of which I speak. Today’s traffic woes are aggravated by a bridge construction project, which has shut down the old Cheat Road for months, blocking one of only two reasonable alternate routes to get to Cheat Lake from the more Westerly parts of Morgantown. I-68 is the only remaining “reasonable” path open to travel between those points, and that route has seen many delays over the past few months on account of accidents and additional highway projects in the area (the latter arguably a result of poor planning). Nonetheless, closures of I-68 at a time when the old Cheat Road is also closed causes major bottlenecks or an absurdity in logistically getting where you need to go.

So today as the funeral procession for Sgt. May plans to block I-68 Westbound traffic beginning at 1:00p.m. on a Friday afternoon, Morgantown residents face a major problem.

Untimely Death of Monongalia County Deputy Sheriff, Sargent May

However, these traffic woes are merely a temporary inconvenience, and as they impact on you and those you know, this offers a good opportunity to reflect — Sargent May was killed on Saturday after a high-speed chase, concluding with a reportedly incapacitated driver (alcohol and prescription drugs have been reported) violently colliding with May’s vehicle. Sgt. May was a well respected officer by all accounts, and his untimely death is indeed very tragic. Sargent May was killed as a result of the alleged recklessness of Jerod Green – who is being charged with murder of a law enforcement officer, criminal homicide, DUI/DWI and other related crimes in causing May’s death. The accounts of what transpired prior to and during the chase are simply astounding, and if proven true would reflect indifference and recklessness of a high degree. However, as you contemplate May’s death and the allegations surrounding Mr. Green’s actions, a deeper reflection is warranted on the multitude of decisions that Green would have had to make prior to the final grizzly and deadly crash.

Drink Responsibly

Please drink responsibly and do not drink and drive. Think ahead if you may be drinking. Plan on having a designated driver or on staying put if you will be drinking. Very strictly limit what, when and where you drink, and the safest bet if you drink at all is to simply not drive. Drinking impairs your judgement, response time, sensory functioning, motor control and your memory, which all impact on your ability to make wise decisions after drinking and your ability to competently drive and handle a vehicle. (Check out this article for more on the Biological Impacts Of Alcohol Use.)

Condolences to Sargent May’s Family & Loved Ones

With this, I offer my condolences to the family and friends of Sargent May at a very tragic loss, and hope that as Morgantown travelers sit in traffic today, that we can each offer up a moment of silence, as we contemplate the loss and our choices to drink responsibly.

Author William S. Adams is a Morgantown wrongful death attorney. If you or a loved one were injured or killed in a car accident as a result of someone’s negligence or intoxication, please call us to discuss your legal case.

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Filed under Accident Law, Car Accident, Current Events, DUI/DWI, Morgantown, Wrongful Death