Two loud clacks of a gavel echoed through the Wayzata High School auditorium, followed by a request atypical to an average school day.
“All rise for the honorable justices of the Supreme Court of the State of Minnesota,” a court official announced before seven robed justices emerged from the wings of the stage.
To an unfamiliar passerby, the scene might have looked like the third act of a play – a courtroom drama put on by a local theatre troupe. But the people on stage weren’t actors, they were Minnesota Supreme Court justices convening to hear the oral arguments of an actual case, the state of Minnesota vs. Maurice Nathaniel Wilson, an appeal to the court in a case in which Wilson was convicted of first-degree premeditated murder and aiding second-degree intentional murder.
The proceedings lasted an hour before the justices left the stage to de-robe. After a short break, they returned to the stage to introduce themselves and answer questions from students.