sioux falls, sd
The spring session of the South Dakota Supreme Court hearings is always held at the University of South Dakota, but the fall session moves around. Students at the University of Sioux Falls say they couldn't be happier to have some of the biggest cases in the state in their own back yard.
"I think it’s a huge honor. We first found out about it last week and I have been so excited to actually see the justice system in action to be able to better understand how it works," USF Criminal Justice student Molly Ryan said.
Ryan has worked with law enforcement in the past, so the death penalty hearing for Rodney Berget stood out to her.
"I was able to sit in on the Roberts' trial as well and was in the court room when they gave their decision. It was just so entertaining to be able to see the same thing but in a completely different way. The difference in the pleas and everything else just, it was just amazing," Ryan said.
Damian Kardas is getting a double major in radiology and criminal justice. For him, the Berget case was also something very interesting to see.
"Both of the attorneys and the state, their arguments were really, well, they really thought them out well. A lot of emotion put into it. I can’t say I coincide on one or the other. They both presented the issues very well and it’s up to these justices to make their unbiased opinion and to make the right call," Kardas said.
For Kardas, having South Dakota’s highest court at his college is something he'll never forget.
"This is something I will probably talk to my grandkids about one day. Just yep, this is one huge, big deal that we all have to sit down and analyze it in a way. These justices are doing their best and it’s something that’s going to be talked about for a while I would say,” Kardas said.
Both students say that these cases will be talked about on campus and in the classroom for some time.