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The West Virginia Supreme Court last week affirmed a 2016 ruling that the former director of the West Virginia State Police forensic laboratory was not acting as a private citizen when she talked to legislators about issues at the lab in 2014.

In a 3-2 ruling issued Wednesday, the court affirmed the decision by Kanawha Circuit Judge Carrie Webster to dismiss a lawsuit from Soraya M. McClung, the former lab director, who claimed her right to free speech was violated when she was demoted at the forensic lab for sharing her concerns about conditions at the lab with lawmakers.

Chief Justice Allen Loughry and Justices Robin Jean Davis and Margaret Workman ruled to affirm Webster’s dismissal, and Justices Menis Ketchum and Beth Walker dissented.

In her original lawsuit, McClung claimed she was demoted from her director position to that of an analyst, which came with a pay cut. She resigned from the lab in 2015, and she since has taken a job at a lab in another state.

McClung said State Police officials violated her First Amendment rights as a private citizen when she was demoted.

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