CA Mock Trial Teams Earn State Berth

Congratulations to all three of Colorado Academy’s Mock Trial teams on their securing the three of the four top spots in the regional Mock Trial competition over the first weekend in February. The top two, CA’s A & B Teams, advance to the Colorado State Tournament set for March 3 and 4, 2017 in the 17th Judicial District at the Adams County Courthouse in Brighton.The Denver regional competition was a trial showdown that included 12 teams in total. CA’s A Team took first place, winning all four trials. The A Team also doubled and won the prized Professionalism Award. Each year, this is given to the team that exhibits the highest standards of ethics, teamwork, respect, and sportsmanship. In the regional rankings, CA’s B Team came in third, and the C team came in just behind.

CA students also took home numerous individual awards.  Anthony Fucarino, Eric Bear, and Eliza Ducnuigeen earned special recognition as Best Witnesses.  Caroline Koclanes, Sloane Murphy, Jacqueline Patel, and Ady Richards won awards as Best Attorneys.  Notably, CA students won half of the individual awards. CA’s teams benefit from several parent volunteers who serve as coaches, and from a nearly decade of school support through faculty sponsor and Upper School history teacher Luis Terrazas.

“As I watched these teams in action,” says Upper School Principal Dr. Jon Vogels, “I know that one of the many takeaways for students is that Mock Trial presents an authentic learning situation where participants have to think quickly on their feet.  Those learning aspects will hold them in good stead in all sorts of endeavors in their lives.”

Says Head of School Dr. Mike Davis, “It’s always so great to see our students in action. I love how CA students support one another as much as they push each other to new levels of excellence. All of the Mock Trial participants  made us proud as institution. We are grateful for the work of our coach volunteers.”

This year’s fictitious Mock Trial case, titled, “Kyle Roberts vs. Productions of THC, Inc.” was a wrongful death claim based on an accident that followed the ingestion of  erroneously packaged and labeled marijuana edibles. The case was written by Hon. John W. Madden IV and Porya Mansorian.

Since 1985, the Colorado Bar Association has sponsored the state’s High School Mock Trial Program. The program is funded by the CBA Litigation Section and the Colorado Bar Foundation. It is one of more than forty-five educational programs in Colorado and is one of the leading and most respected programs in the country.
More than 100 high school teams participate in Colorado’s mock trial program. Approximately 1,500 students perform as attorneys and/or witnesses in a court case. Hundreds of attorneys, judges, teachers, and other community leaders volunteer their time to instruct students about the judicial system and the trial process through this educational program. Student performances are scored on criteria that outline several elements of performance as a witness or as a prosecution or defense attorney. Points are awarded for each student’s performance. No verdicts are given in mock trial. Mock trial performances are scored on knowledge and use of the Rules of Evidence, trial procedures, witness character portrayals, and the conviction of each side’s argument.