Valley News -

Great Oak, Murrieta Valley mock trial teams advance to elite eight round

 

Last updated 2/25/2019 at 9:11am



RIVERSIDE - Teams from eight Riverside County high schools will square off Wednesday in the "elite eight'' round of the 37th annual Riverside County Mock Trial Competition, vying for an opportunity to represent the county in the statewide event.

Hundreds of students from 24 area high schools entered the county contest, but after four rounds held over the last three weeks, only eight teams remain, seeking to advance to the semifinals on Saturday, according to the Office of Education.

Wednesday's elite eight playoff will be held at the Robert Presley Hall of Justice, beginning at about 6 p.m. The following schools will be represented:

-- Great Oak High School, Temecula;

-- Murrieta Valley High School, Murrieta.

-- Notre Dame High School, Riverside;

-- Valley View High School, Moreno Valley;

-- Martin Luther King High School, Riverside;

-- Xavier College Preparatory, Palm Desert;

-- John W. North High School, Riverside;

-- Poly High School, Riverside; and

The event is sponsored by the Office of Education, the Constitutional Rights Foundation, the Riverside County Bar Association and the Superior Court.

The county began holding student-level mock trials in 1983, and more than 13,000 youths have participated since then, according to organizers. This year's contest challenges participants to successfully argue the fictitious case of People v. Klein, involving a young adult accused of "swatting,'' a harassment tactic that involves fraudulently sending police or emergency services to another person's address.

Teams consisting of anywhere between eight and 25 youths play the parts of deputy district attorneys, defense attorneys, bailiffs, witnesses, clerks and investigators. Contestants are given an allotted time, generally four to six minutes, at each stage of a proceeding, including opening and closing statements and cross-examinations.

Practicing attorneys and judges assess students' performance and award points in accordance with criteria established for the competition.

More than a dozen students were honored for top performances with blue ribbons and prestigious internships in local legal organizations after the fourth round of competition on Saturday, Feb. 23. Several local students received honors:

Outstanding Clerk

1st Place – Gold Medal: Aliya Tahir, Valley View High School

2nd Place – Silver Medal: Gianna Quintero, Murrieta Valley High School

3rd Place – Bronze Medal: Katie Stone, Great Oak High School

Outstanding Defense Pretrial Motion Attorney

1st Place – Gold Medal: Jennifer Hibbard, Poly High High School

2nd Place – Silver Medal: Ivana Ron, Chaparral View High School

3rd Place – Bronze Medal: Nicholas Delzompo, Murrieta Valley High School

Outstanding Prosecution Pretrial Motion Attorney

1st Place – Gold Medal: Nicholas Delzompo, Murrieta Valley High School

2nd Place – Silver Medal: Alpha-Ruth Muyambo, Valley View High School

3rd Place – Bronze Medal: Jennifer Hibbard, Poly High School

Outstanding Prosecution Witnesses

Witness:

1st Place – Gold Medal: Brooklyn Bush, Hemet High School

2nd Place – Silver Medal: Lauren Trippeer, Palm Desert High School

3rd Place – Bronze Medal: Devin Davis, Valley View High School

Witness:

1st Place – Gold Medal: Fallop Heaslip, Murrieta Valley High School

2nd Place – Silver Medal: Fatima Castillo, Patriot High School

3rd Place – Bronze Medal: Taylor Schlicht, Xavier College Prepatory

Outstanding Defense Witnesses

Defendant:

1st Place – Gold Medal: Jenna West, Murrieta Valley High School

2nd Place – Silver Medal: Mia Filice, Xavier College Preparatory

3rd Place – Bronze Medal: Susana Toner, Poly High School

Witness:

1st Place – Gold Medal: Amanda Laule, Palm Valley High School

2nd Place – Silver Medal: Italia Ivers, Ramona High School

3rd Place – Bronze Medal: Sofia Mirabal, Heritage High School

Witness:

1st Place – Gold Medal: Konrad Verbaarschott, Great Oak High School

2nd Place – Silver Medal: Christian Velasco, Ramona High School

3rd Place – Bronze Medal: Gabriella Ramirez, Temecula Preparatory Academy

Witness:

1st Place – Gold Medal: Mira Oflus, Murrieta Valley High School

2nd Place – Silver Medal: Shelbie Nelson, Poly High School

3rd Place – Bronze Medal: Lindsay Fokwa, John W. North High School

Students from public and private high schools are permitted to take part. Last year's winning team was Martin Luther King High School.

The highest-scoring team this year will go on to represent the county at the State Mock Trial Competition, slated for March 22-24 in Sacramento.

 

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