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Seeking order in the Mock Trial Court: SVC’s Mock Trial Team is Off to a Great Season

By Brianna Saylor, News Editor

Originally Published November 28, 2023

The SVC Mock Trial Team is having yet another incredibly successful season! They traveled to St. Bonaventure University in Olean, NY, on Nov. 4, where they competed for two days against twelve teams across the country.

(SOURCE: SVC MCKENNA SCHOOL INSTAGRAM) Photo of SVC Mock Trial Team at St. Bonaventure University in Olean, NY.

Mock trial is an extracurricular activity available to students, where they take on roles of attorneys or witnesses and compete in a ‘fake’ trial that simulates all the actual rules and regulations of a real courtroom. Schools from across the country are registered to compete through the American Mock Trial Association (AMTA), which serves as the governing body for intercollegiate mock trial competitions. Through engaging in trial simulations in competition with teams from other institutions, students develop critical thinking and public speaking skills and knowledge of legal practices and procedures. AMTA sponsors regional and national competitions and provides case materials for academic use.

This year’s case focuses on the State of Midlands v. B.F. De la Porta & Poe Cameron. The case concerns four masked individuals who make it into a vault during the annual charity gala for Sohi Children’s Hospital and steal some of the items up for auction. During the heist, one of the armed robbers and Emory Sands, a Miller Tower security officer, are severely wounded. Two of the robbers flee via a helicopter on the rooftop, and two escape into the streets of Santa Ivo City. After an extensive investigation on the local and federal level, Poe Cameron is arrested as one of the four suspected armed robbers, and local billionaire Berkley De la Porta is arrested for funding the criminal operation.

SVC came away with three victories–Rebekah Bollman, junior criminology major, and Alicia Boretti, sophomore political science major, earned top attorney awards and Lucy Brayton, freshman politics major, earned a top witness award. These achievements placed them within the top 10 percent in their respective categories.

Delaney Fox, senior political science major and co-practice coordinator for the Mock Trial Team, commented on the team’s progress and success this semester, “With case changes coming out soon, we’ll have to revise a few things, but we have a strong team that works really well together and has been working hard on perfecting their roles, so I know we are going to do great heading into the next competition.”

Fox reflected on her time on the mock trial team and how it was truly personal for her.

“I competed in mock trials in high school for four years and now at Saint Vincent for three. [R]eflecting now as a senior who is applying to law school, I can say that high school mock trial was really the thing that made me realize that I wanted to go into law in the first place. The SVC mock trial team propelled that dream into a reality, and even more so now that I have

had the opportunity to take on a leadership role on the team, it’s been an incredibly rewarding and meaningful experience.”

The Saint Vincent Mock Trial Team is made up of nine students: Delaney Fox, senior political science major; Bollman; Boretti; Brayton; Matthew Thomas, sophomore political science major, Adrian Lee, sophomore criminology major; Allie Gray, junior psychology major; Lily Murphy, sophomore politics major; and Brady Johnson, freshman business major. They are led by coaches Michael Arabia, adjunct professor of business for the McKenna School, and George Miller, adjunct lecturer of business administration for the McKenna School.

They will travel to Kent State University in Kent, Ohio, at the end of January to compete again, now with the new case changes, before heading to Regionals in February, which will be held at Penn State University.

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