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Democratic West Virginia Supreme Court Justice Resigns Hours After Impeachment

FILE - Justice Robin Jean Davis.
FILE - Justice Robin Jean Davis.

A Democratic Supreme Court justice in the U.S. state of West Virginia said hours after she was impeached Tuesday that she was retiring, triggering a special election for her replacement and denying the Republican governor a chance to name her successor.

The citizens of West Virginia now "will be afforded their constitutional right to elect my successor in November," Justice Robin Davis said as she announced her departure at the state capital.

Davis announced her resignation after being impeached for committing wrongful acts, including spending $500,000 on office renovations.

The House of Delegates voted Monday to impeach all four remaining justices over spending issues. They will be brought to trial in the Senate, which is controlled by Republicans, as is the House.

Davis said their impeachment was a travesty of justice and a brazen attempt by one branch of government to seize control over another.

Justice Menis Ketchum retired earlier this year. Any of the three remaining justices who are considering resigning must do so by the Tuesday deadline in order for their replacements to be decided in a November special election. Gov. Jim Justice will appoint replacements who will serve until the election.

All four justices were impeached for failing to control expenses and for not maintaining policies over matters involving state vehicles, working lunches and the use of office computers at home.