As stated by Dean Thomas P. Hardman in his article on the evidentiary effect of views, the question whether a judge may have a view and whether what the judge observes upon a view is usable as substantive evidence, has never been judicially decided in West Virginia. However, recently in the case of Westover Volunteer Fire Department v. Barker2 hereinafter referred to as the principal case, the Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia was, to a very limited extent, presented with those questions. Because there are today a great number of cases in which the judge sits as the trier of fact and there are statements of the court in the aforementioned case from which it is felt that erroneous inferences could possibly be drawn, although the court expressly limited its decision, it is important that comment be made upon the case and upon some of the questions which were raised, at least, inferentially.
R. W. F.,
View by a Judge Sitting in Lieu of a Jury,
W. Va. L. Rev.
Available at: https://researchrepository.wvu.edu/wvlr/vol59/iss4/13