Supreme Court Justice Thomson To Discuss Judicial System With Students

Supreme Court Justice David Thomson


New Mexico students will have an opportunity to discuss the judicial system with a member of the state Supreme Court under an educational program starting next month.

Students in the Santa Fe and Albuquerque public school districts will remotely observe oral arguments in a case the state’s highest court will hear on March 3. Justice David K. Thomson will meet online with students after the hearing to answer questions and explain the role of the judicial system in America’s democracy. The live stream of the arguments will be archived, providing flexibility for teachers and students to integrate the hearing into their class schedules.

“As a means toward civic education, I believe the citizens of New Mexico will better understand the ‘rule of law’ and its importance by watching it in action,” said Justice Thomson. “In the branch of government I am honored to be a part, the Judiciary, the rule of law means striving to ensure that those laws set out in the Constitution and statutes apply to each person equally and those that violate them are treated equally in a court of law.”

The Court extends an invitation to schools across New Mexico to participate in the program in the future. Interested school administrators, teachers and student groups should contact Justice Thomson’s office at 505-827-4932.

The case at issue in the March 3 hearing is State v. Adams, S-1-SC-37722, which involves a legal question of whether a trial court should have excluded results of a blood alcohol test in a DWI prosecution. Oral arguments in the case start at 9 a.m.

During Justice Thomson’s meeting with students, he will be precluded by judicial ethical standards from discussing his own or another justice’s views about the pending case or its outcome. He can discuss general legal matters and the judicial process for resolving civil disputes and criminal prosecutions.

Justice Thomson was born and raised in Santa Fe, and graduated from Santa Fe High School. He received his law degree from the University of Denver Sturm College of Law. Before joining the Supreme Court in 2019, he served as a judge on the First Judicial District Court.