MADERA – Mia Summers from Yosemite High School is the winning Courtroom Journalist on completion of the 2013-2014 Honorable Edward P. Moffat Madera County Mock Trial held on December 4, 5, and 10.
The Mock Trial is a simulation of a criminal court case in which the students act as attorneys, witnesses, bailiffs and clerks. Attorneys from throughout the valley score the students’ performance.
Summers wrote a story based on Tuesday’s trial. Overall, Yosemite High School placed second after going up against Madera and Liberty High Schools. Liberty ultimately took first place. Summers will go on to represent Madera County at the state competition March 21-23 in San Jose.
Outstanding Mock Trial Performers included Katelyn Suderman and Sarah Swan for Defense Witness, and Ben Hartesveldt as Prosecution Witness. Performers who received Honorable Mention include Sarah Swan as Prosecution Pre-Trial Attorney, Sophia O’Meara as Defense Pre-Trial Attorney and Prosecution Attorney, Allison Boyer as Prosecution Attorney, Jocelyn Boe as Prosecution Witness and Jessica Tanoury as Defense Witness.
Select students were given the honor of MVP, nominated by the opposing team because they displayed outstanding role portrayal, attitude, demeanor, sportsmanship and helping hand. Liberty High selected YHS student Ally Boyer, while Madera High chose YHS’s Jocelyn Boe.
The Yosemite team in its entirety was made up of Erin Asis, Victoria Bartunek, Jocelyn Boe, Allison Boyer, Joel Bradshaw, Angelina Clark, Bobby Crabtree, Sabrina Garcia, Ben Hartesveldt, Caden McCoon, Tara Neill, Sophia O’Meara, Ellen Saunders, Olivia Pearson, Katelyn Suderman, Sarah Swan, Jessica Tanoury.
“It was a tough competition and we are proud of all of our teams,” said Cecilia Massetti, Madera County Superintendent of Schools. “Students learned so much about the court system through this experience.”
During the fictional case, People vs. Concha, Rae Concha was tried for second degree murder and possession for sale of a controlled substance (amphetamine in the form of prescription Adderall).
“It’s exciting to have students from each school representing Madera County at the state competition,” said Massetti. “We wish them luck during the next round of competition.”
Mock Trial students also discussed the Fourth Amendment protection against unlawful search and seizure. Each team was coached by attorneys as well as teachers in preparation for the trial. Yosemite High was coached by attorney coach Bernie McGoldrick and teacher coach Deborah Brown.
Judge Ernest LiCalsi, Judge Michael Jurkovich and Judge Charles Wieland presided over the trials. The Mock Trial was held on three separate days and teams participated in six rounds of competition. Madera County will also be sending Courtroom Artist Shelby Boyd to the state competition. Boyd is a Madera High School student who sketched a courtroom scene during Thursday’s trial.
The Mock Trial and other student academic events are supported by Madera County Office of Education and Madera County Schools Foundation through community and business donations and volunteers. Madera County Superior Court co-sponsored the Mock Trial. California Rights Foundation provided the trial cases.
The team is pictured with Judge Ernest LiCalsi; Randy Seals, principal; Deborah Brown, coach; and Bernie McGoldrick, attorney coach.