For the first time, the mock trial team has managed to reach the district-level of the Pennsylvania Bar Association’s mock trial division. Both the prosecution team and the defense team advanced to the district-level of the competition.
The district-level competition has taken place at the Chester County Courthouse on February 18, 2015. The team ended the competition at a loss.
“I think that there was a lot of new players this year. I thought that they performed great.” says Mrs. Randle, one of the advisors for Mock Trial.
While districts was one of the bigger highlights of the year, both the prosecution and the defense team went undefeated for their first two rounds. As a result, they became a top five team. Top five teams go on to the semifinals within districts.
In preparation for the districts competition, Mr. Joseph McGettigan has helped to judge and critique both the prosecution and defense teams. Mr. McGettigan was the prosecutor for the Jerry Sandusky and John du Pont trials.
“I thought that it was a really cool opportunity for the guys.” says Mrs. Randle. “He offered really practical advice, and it was nice to have an outsider give their expertise.”
Members of the team also shared the same sentiment. “He was pretty interesting. He had a lot of interesting insights into the case.” said Rohan Jhunjhunwala ‘18.
“We learned about the trial and how the law system works,” says Sean Ward ‘17, “It helped us win both of our matches.”
Each team is judged before a panel of judges and a jury. Teams are graded on their performance. Along with presentation and performance, teams are graded on their knowledge of applicable laws and knowing case theory.
Every year, the case files for mock trial change. This year’s case involves a homicide that is the result of a college hazing incident. “The cases are always well done,” says Mrs. Randle “There are no clear answers. There are a lot of nuances to each case.”
The competition, which dates back to 1997, is sponsored by the Pennsylvania Bar Association. It involves over 300 high schools from all over Pennsylvania.
Despite not winning districts, Mrs. Randle has a positive outlook for next year. “I’m sad that our three senior attorneys are graduating,” she says, “I’m really excited about the younger group. They are very passionate, and I see that they will have a bright future with taking the lead next year.”