School mock trial competition also teaches valuable lessons

| 29 Sep 2011 | 08:13

WESTFALL - The Delaware Valley High School Mock Trial team placed second in the “closest competition in mock trial history at the District 4 level”. The group cleared the preliminary round of competition on Feb. 27, scoring the highest point total out of ten schools. Delaware Valley presented both the Commonwealth and defense side of the case during this section of competition. They were one of three teams which were undefeated and advanced to next tiebreaking level. The case itself was a third-degree murder trial which centered on a fictional story of a café owner who allegedly killed his homeless employee. Provided with witness affidavits, case materials, and evidence, team members worked hard for weeks to prepare the case. During the next round of competition, the team presented the defense side of the case only. In a head-to-head battle for the place that would send them to regional competition in Scranton, the Delaware Valley team, which was composed of three lawyers and two witnesses, pressed on. Their adversaries, Wallenpaupack, just emerged over the third place team with a unanimous decision by the jury which was made up by local volunteer lawyers. After about an hour and a half of testimony, objections, and opening and closing statements, the verdict was in. The jury was split down the middle, 3-3. To break this tie, the points on the scorecards were tallied up. With a final score of 422-419, Delaware Valley was narrowly defeated by a mere three points. Despite the loss, the team, as well as the coaches, Larry Marcial and Mark Robins, remained very triumphant in making it as far as they did. Graduating four year member of the team, Jessica McKnight, said, “mock trial has been on of the happiest times in my life so far because it taught me a very important lesson in life: fight for what you believe in and don’t back down.”