Darren Doyle, story and photos:
It was standing room only in lower courtroom of the Edmonson County Courthouse today as a huge crowd came out to support J.B. Hines as he was sworn in as the new 38th District Judge by the Honorable Chief Justice John Minton.
Hines has served as Edmonson County Attorney since January of 2015. After taking the oath of office, he addressed the crowd, wearing his new judge's robe.
"Over the years, I've stood in this courtroom for one side or the other and faced a jury," said Judge Hines. "But I've never had such a jury as I have today; thank you so much for being here."
He went on and said how the courtroom meant so much to him, and that it embodied the principles upon that of which America was built.
"I feel so honored over the years to be part of this system, and I vow to continue to act fairly and impartially as I go forward as a judge."
Hines also thanked Chief Justice Minton, Judge Renona Browning (retired), Judge Kelly Thompson, Judge Mike McCowan, and Judge John McCarty, all of which were in attendance. He recognized all the judges and spoke how each one had helped him along the way.
We spoke one-one-one with Judge Hines and he was grateful for the opportunity.
"Thanks for allowing me to talk with you," he said. "First and foremost, I want to thank my wife, Shaska, who has been a bedrock and so supportive of me. Without her, I wouldn't have been able to do what I've done."
He said being appointed to the judgeship has been a great honor, and he credited the people of Edmonson County for their support over the last few years.
"I've been humbled and honored that Edmonson County has given me an opportunity to serve them and I'll continue to do so in this capacity while also serving all the people of the 38th district," he said with a smile.
Judge Hines also recognized and thanked several members of the bar and the circuit court clerks of the 38th district in attendance which included Shannon Kirtley (Ohio Co.), Melissa Cardwell (Butler Co.), Noel Quinn (Hancock Co.), and Edmonson County's own Tanya Hodges.
"I've worked with Tanya over the years, and I thank her for everything she's done to make me successful in my work and helping the court system in Edmonson County," he said.
Judge Hines closed his remarks by telling the crowd that he looked forward to working with the people of the 38th District.
"I feel immensely proud and humbled," he added. "Thank you for coming, thank you so much," he said as the crowd raised to their feet in a standing ovation.
Judge Hines' duties are effective immediately and his county attorney office is in the process of transferring all office material, information, records, and documents, to Attorney Greg Vincent, who is set to be sworn in as Edmonson County's Attorney at 2pm today.