DANVILLE — Danville’s Mock Trial program has been going strong for 23 years, and shows no signs of slowing down. It ended the season in the top 18 of 319 teams participating in Mock Trial.
This year’s case explores the Fourth Amendment’s protection against unreasonable searches and seizures. The trial teams will determine how the Fourth Amendment applies to the use of force by a police officer to deter or eliminate the threat of harm to the public and officer.
Three Danville teams went to district competition on Jan. 29, and came back with several awards. Seth Riley, representing the Third Team, won the Outstanding Witness Award; Jaret Baker, representing the second team, won the Outstanding Attorney Award; Russell Alden and Emma Lucas, representing the first team, each won Outstanding Attorney awards; and Mason Endsley, also representing the First Team, won the Outstanding Witness Award. The First Team together won both the plaintiff and defense sides of their trial, and thus won the right to advance to regional competition.
Advisor Jim Holmes said that in regionals on Feb. 19 the First Team had another very successful experience. Alexa Pack and Emma Lucas each won Outstanding Attorney awards and Tanesha Lewis and Mason Endsley each won Outstanding Witness awards.
First Team next competed in State Mock Trial competition March 10 in Columbus. They won their first trial, which was against Cincinnati King, but lost the second trial against Lexington. David Alden won an Outstanding Attorney award, and Mason Endsley and Tanesha Lewis each earned Outstanding Witness awards.
Several high school Mock Trial participants are also sharing their expertise with younger students. Emma Lucas, Mason Endsley, Michaela Frye, David Alden, Alexandra Howell, Jaret Baker and Addison Wills are currently meeting after school two days a week to help prepare 20 sixth-, seventh- and eighth-graders for their Middle School Mock Trial Showcase. The showcase will be held April 22 in the Ohio Judicial Center in Columbus.
Mock Trial advisors work with the students after school at least two times a week from November to early spring. In addition to Holmes, volunteer Danville Mock Trial veteran advisors include Noel B. Alden, a partner with the Law Firm of Zelkowitz, Barry and Cullers, Brittany Whitney , who is the Assistant City Law Director for Mount Vernon and Professor Emeritus Peggy Dunn, who works with the students to help them hone their skills in proper speaking and presentation techniques. New advisors this year are high school teachers B.J. Addair and Jason Sanders.