Miss. high court dismisses appeal

By The Associated Press

JACKSON — The Mississippi Supreme Court has dismissed a dispute over a drug court in north Mississippi.

The case involved a local brouhaha in Lafayette County over who is going to hold the purse strings of the drug court.

The Lafayette County Board of Supervisors had appealed from a judge’s order instructing them to not interfere with the operation of the local drug court.

The Supreme Court on Thursday said the appeal was moot because “Union County has replaced Lafayette County

as the lead county for the Third Circuit Drug Court.”

Justice Jim Kitchens, writing for the court, said the courts were not the place to resolve such disputes. He said the State Drug Court Advisory Committee was better suited to handle such issues.

On Sept. 21, 2010, Circuit Court Andrew Howorth, who started drug court in January 2008, filed a “cease and desist” in June against the supervisors.

Howorth claimed the supervisors had continually interfered with the operations of the circuit court, almost from the day the current board took office in 2008. He also ordered the supervisors to comply with all reasonable requests made by and on behalf of the drug court pertaining to its funding by Lafayette County.

Earlier, Howorth had decided that Lafayette County would have no more responsibility for administering federal funds for the drug court program. He shifted that responsibility to Union County.

The 3rd Circuit drug court serves Lafayette, Marshall, Benton, Calhoun, Chickasaw, Tippah and Union counties. Court is held in Oxford.(Write your story here)

Click video to hear audio