Ex-high court justice can leave West Virginia pre-sentencing

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — A judge is letting a former West Virginia Supreme Court justice visit relatives in North Carolina before his federal sentencing on Jan. 30.

According to the Charleston Gazette-Mail , U.S. District Judge John Copenhaver’s order requires former Justice Menis Ketchum to get his probation officer’s permission before each trip.

Ketchum wants to visit his daughter and her family in Gibsonville, North Carolina to help get her farm, buildings and home into proper condition.

Ketchum pleaded guilty in August to one felony wire fraud count related to his personal use of a state vehicle and gas fuel card.

Ketchum retired in July, avoiding court-wide impeachment proceedings.

The impeachment probe was sparked by questions involving $3 million-plus in renovations to justices’ offices and expanded to accusations of corruption, incompetence and neglect of duty.

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