Ireland Coiner, a Senior at Paul Laurence Dunbar High School

ireland-coinerMy name is Ireland Coiner and I am a senior this year at Paul Laurence Dunbar High School. This is week three of my rotation at the Commonwealth Attorney’s Office and I’ve already learned so much from Mrs. Briana Persley. Before I came here, I thought that I had a good idea of how our court system functions. Now, I realize that I had little idea of what the system is like. Contacting victims, visiting court, and shadowing Mrs. Persley has taught me many new things about law and the court system.

Observing court has been my favorite part of my rotation. The first thing that I learned was the difference between District and Circuit Courts. District Courts are the lower courts for misdemeanors while Circuit Courts are for felonies. I have attended arraignments and a competency hearing. The court system is much more complicated than what most people think. Sentencing can be very complicated and time consuming.

Contacting victims is my other favorite part of my rotation. I think that it is amazing to be able to reach out to these people and help them. I have helped Mrs. Persley send emails and call victims. Understanding each case and updating the victim on what is happening is a very rewarding experience. I now have an understanding of what it is like to be a victim’s advocate and it is a career that I can see myself pursuing in the future. Overall, I have already had a great experience here at Commonwealth Attorney’s Office.

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