Two Campbell Law School alumni — Superior Court Judge Charles (Casey) Viser ’00 and Chief District Court Judge Angelica Chavis McIntyre ’13 — have been appointed to a groundbreaking task force by North Carolina Supreme Court Chief Justice Paul Newby.
Newby, who is also an adjunct professor at the law school, launched the Task Force on ACEs – Informed Courts on May 18 with the goal of enabling the Judicial Branch to understand the impact of ACEs (adverse childhood experiences; adverse community environments) on children and to develop strategies for addressing the consequences of such experiences within the court system. Newby explained in a release that “these traumas increase the likelihood that these children will end up in the courtroom.” This task force, however, is designed to mitigate such consequences by providing judges and court administrators with practical education on the effects of ACEs and equipping juvenile court officials to identify and recognize the impact of ACEs on offenders and victims. In addition, the task force will design and establish new programs that impact the lives of young offenders and victims of ACEs to put them on a path away from the courthouse and provide a platform for feedback to educators regarding their experiences, Newby added.
The task force is comprised of 20 members including judges, prosecutors, defense attorneys, clerks, law enforcement, private attorneys, child-representatives and academic leaders. An advisory group of subject matter experts and representatives from law schools, universities, the state Executive Branch and private foundations will supplement the task force in its education and decision making.
Viser was a civil and criminal trial attorney at James, McElroy & Diehl P.A. before being appointed to District Court and then winning his seat in Superior Court in 2016. McIntyre was an assistant district attorney prior to being elected to the district court bench in November 2018. She is the first Native American female chief district court judge in North Carolina. “It is an honor to serve the needs of our youth by being part of the ACE Task Force,” she said.
According to Newby, a task force of this kind is the first in the nation and will span across all 100 counties of North Carolina. “I’m looking forward to the positive outcomes this group will produce for our children and communities,” he added in a release.