New magistrate appointee Richard Postalwait began his first day on the job yesterday, after officially being sworn by Judge Thomas Evans III. Postalwait completed the initial training program required by the Supreme Court.

"I am pleased to once again have the opportunity to serve this community," he said. "It is my desire to serve with the highest of judicial ethics and integrity, qualities that a magistrate should possess."

Chief Judge Thomas Evans III requested the continued employment of Shari Johnson as Magistrate Clerk, and Magistrate Postalwait confirmed her continued employment. "Shari and I look forward to working together to make Magistrate Court a comfortable place at a time in people's lives when it may be anything but," Postalwait said.

The new magistrate is a former Calhoun County deputy sheriff and a graduate of the West Virginia State Police Academy. His appointment will continue until the next election, when a magistrate will be elected.

He is replacing Magistrate Steve Johnson who resigned from the position. The West Virginia Supreme Court sanctioned an audit of Johnson's office accounts, after discrepancies were discovered. Grand Jury action could be taken against Johnson in January, 2002, according to court sources.

"I look forward to administering fair justice, making the citizens of the county feel safe, and helping them resolve the issues they may be facing," Postalwait concluded.

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