District court judge holds court at Warren high school

At Lincoln High School in Warren today, 37th District Court Judge Matthew P. Sabaugh was scheduled to preside over a special court session.

The Warren court has received approval from the State Court Administrator’s office to hear cases off-site at local schools.

Sabaugh has been conducting special court sessions in schools throughout the Detroit suburb for more than four years as part of his mission to create public awareness of the court system.

“Court in School” has proven to be a great success at high schools and middle schools in the district, according to Sabaugh.

“The response from the students has been tremendous,” he said. “The students have many questions and they get an eye-opening experience about our legal system.”

 Court staff will be present and all proceedings will be “on the record” and recorded because the Lincoln High Auditorium will be considered a real courtroom for the day, the judge said.
Sabaugh said he believes the special court session will hold great educational value to the students.

“Young people today need to know the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse and criminal behavior,” he said.

When the students see the consequences, Sabaugh said, “they can learn from mistakes of others and make smarter decisions in their own lives.”

“I would much rather come to the school and speak to these students about the dangers of criminal behavior then to have them appear before me in court,” Sabaugh added, noting the docket would include several criminal cases scheduled for sentencing.

Sabaugh said the program “isn’t all about scaring students straight.”

“This is an opportunity for these kids to see positive role models in their community,” he said. “I and several attorneys will be addressing the students to share our experiences and encourage the students to work hard in school and follow their dreams.”