Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Familiar place and faces

IT FELT GOOD to be back in my old stomping grounds this morning, inside the Adams County Courthouse.

I've been hired by the Quincy Journal to do some crime and courts reporting. Click here for my first story about a murder trial starting in Quincy.

A lot of the same faces are still at Fifth and Vermont. Hank Pfeiffer is still large and in charge with courtroom security. Most of the Adams County Sheriff's deputies are still there, as are the officers at the entrance. The courtroom is the same.

We are in Judge Robert Adrian's courtroom - I didn't get to see much of him before I left The Whig three years ago, but I've known him for a long time. State's Attorney Jon Barnard has a new Assistant State's Attorney with him in Laura Keck. Tad Brenner is one of the defense attorneys. I even recognized many of the names on the witness list as they were read off in court.

I sat next to Don O'Brien, who took my job at The Whig. I hired Don way back in 1997, I think. He's a very good reporter and has done a tremendous job. It feels a little strange competing with him, but I really don't look at it that way - we both have jobs to do, and we'll do them to the best of our ability. He's a good guy and friend, and that won't change.

I'm probably going to stay away from commenting much during trials - I'm trying to be as fair and impartial as possible. Yet you'll be able to get some insight here, I hope.

Above all, I'm indebted to my wife, Sheryl, who dealt with a busy morning at the store, edits my blog and supports me in this new (old) endeavor.

The pen still flows and the words still come out, thankfully!

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