State Supreme Court Chief Justice C. Shannon Bacon delivered the first State of the Judiciary address in four years Tuesday, telling a joint session of the House and Senate that New Mexico’s court system is “battered and bruised, strong, resilient, creative, committed and caring.”

In a session where crime legislation is already piling up at the Roundhouse, Bacon highlighted the rights of the accused in her approximately 30-minute speech, reminding lawmakers of the foundational ideals of the justice system.

“We all feel deep sorrow and fear when we read about a senseless death and other tragedies from crimes,” she said. “Yet we must remember why our Constitution protects the rights of every person, including those accused of crime. They are just that — accused, and presumed innocent in the eyes of the law.”

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