CENTRAL FALLS, R.I. -- The state Supreme Court brought its security staff, clerks, files and good humor to Central Falls High School Wednesday as it took its arguments on the road.
More than 100 students heard arguments about issues ranging from what constitutes a domestic assault to whether the state should be held responsible for chemical burns to a teenager who broke into the Ladd School to chase ghosts.
The justices heaped praise on the school in the state's smallest and poorest city.
"We're proud of Central Falls, where it's come and where we are now," Justice Francis X. Flaherty said at the close of more than two hours of arguments.
Justice William P. Robinson III called the city a "shining light in the state of Rhode Island."
He encouraged the teenagers to pursue a career in law, be it as a lawyer or in law enforcement. "Law is what binds our society together."
They appeared to have takers, though some students could be seen playing with their cell phones in the high school auditorium. Jean Paul Valencia, a senior, hopes to become a corporate attorney.
"I think it's amazing they would consider coming to see us," Valencia said.