High school students gear up for S.C. Bar Mock Trial Competition

  • Friday, February 21, 2014

Seven schools from the Lowcountry region will compete in the S.C. Bar Regional High School Mock Trial Competition on Saturday, Feb. 22, at the North Charleston Municipal Complex located at 2500 City Hall Lane in North Charleston.

Participating high schools include Academic Magnet, Berkeley, Cane Bay, Charleston County School of the Arts, Fort Dorchester, Summerville and Wando.

Students will present the plaintiff and defendant sides of a fictitious case before a panel of local volunteer judges and lawyers. Additionally, students will fill the roles of defendant, witnesses, bailiff and timekeepers.

Each team will be judged on its presentation skills, rather than the legal merits of the case.

This yearís fictitious civil case is the Estate of Jordan Simon v. Terry Swift and Hilliard Academy. Jordan Simon, a senior track star at Hilliard Academy, died of a heart attack caused by steroid use. His mother, Kelly Simon, is suing Hilliard Academy and Coach Terry Swift for negligence in Jordanís death.

Hilliard Academy and Swift deny these claims and are arguing Kelly Simon was comparatively negligent in not discovering Jordanís steroid use.

For more information about the mock trial case or program, visit www.scbar.org/lre.

A total of 49 schools will compete in the regional competition, and 12 teams will advance to the state competition March 7-8 at the Matthew J. Perry Jr. Federal Courthouse in Columbia.

The roles of courtroom sketch artist and courtroom journalist were introduced in the 2011 competition and return this year to broaden participation across a more diverse group of students. Entries will be judged by local reporters, graphic designers and artists, and the winners will receive a certificate and plaque at their schoolsí awards days.

For examples of last yearís winning entries, visit www.scbar.org/LawRelatedEducation/AllPrograms/HighSchoolMockTrial.

The Mock Trial Program is sponsored by the S.C. Barís Law-Related Education (LRE) Division, which was developed in 1976 to improve the ability of teachers to instruct law-related education.

The Mock Trial Program is made possible through an S.C. Bar Foundation IOLTA grant and the S.C. Bar.

The South Carolina Bar, which has a membership of more than 14,500 lawyers, is dedicated to advancing justice, professionalism and understanding of the law.

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