CHARLESTON, W.V. (LOOTPRESS) – Supreme Court Justices speak of the life and legacy of Thirteenth Judicial Circuit (Kanawha County) Judge Charles E. King, following his death on Monday, Dec. 28.
First elected in 1988, Judge King was re-elected in 2000, 2008 and 2016. He also served as Chief Circuit Judge multiple times, most recently serving January to early December 2020.
Several Supreme Court Justices spoke highly of Judge King and his professional reputation.
“Judge King had a long and distinguished career and helped lead the Kanawha County Circuit Court through the Covid-related challenges this year as Chief Judge. I extend my deepest sympathy to his family and colleagues,” said Chief Justice Tim Armstead.
Justice Margaret Workman said, “I am so sorry to learn of Charlie King’s death. He was the prosecuting attorney when I was a circuit court judge in Kanawha County, and I really enjoyed working with him. He had a great legal mind and wonderful sense of humor, and he was a very good person. His many years of public service as prosecutor and judge were his life’s work, and he will be greatly missed. My sympathies go out to his family and many friends.”
“Judge King was a giant in the legal community and such a respected judge on the bench by those who appeared before him in court. We are so saddened by this news and want his family to know just how much he was respected for his years of public service,” said Justice Evan Jenkins.
Justice John Hutchison, a former Raleigh County Circuit Judge, said, “For the last 25 years I have considered Judge Charlie King to be a friend as well as a colleague. His death creates a significant void in the judicial system in the state of West Virginia. Judge King was a leader in the judicial system and was noted for his intellect and good humor. He definitely will be missed by all the judges who had the opportunity to work with him. I send my sincere condolences to his family.”
Judge King, a native of Charleston and graduate of George Washington High School, received an accounting degree from West Virginia University in 1970 and a law degree from West Virginia University College of Law in 1973.
Following college, he was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the U.S. Army and was later discharged with the rank of Captain.
Judge King was the Assistant Kanawha County Prosecutor for six years from 1973 to 1979 and the elected Kanawha County Prosecutor from 1984 to 1988. He was a member of the West Virginia Judicial Association, the Kanawha County and West Virginia Bar Associations, and was a former member of the National District Attorneys Association, the West Virginia Trial Lawyers Association, and the West Virginia Prosecuting Attorneys Association. He served on a part-time basis as an instructor to city, county, and State Police officers, and the Prosecuting Attorneys Association, and participated in seminars of the West Virginia Trial Lawyers Association and other legal organizations.
He is survived by his wife, Phyllis, and his daughters Amy and Stacy.