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Beginning on Thursday, January 28th, at 5:00 pm, high school teams will meet at the Westmoreland County Courthouse to begin the 2016 Mock Trial Competition. This event is free and open to the public. Entrance to the competition is at the Main Street entrance to the Courthouse. Contact the Westmoreland Bar Association at 724-834-6730 for additional information.
Students will try a “pretend” civil case, with a pretend defendant, pretend witnesses, and pretend attorneys, but in real courtrooms. All teams will rotate between the defense and the prosecution and the winning team will move on to regionals and, if successful, state and national competition. High school participants are required to put in countless hours learning about courtroom procedures and rules of the competition under the guidance of a volunteer attorney coach and teacher coach.
Other dates for the competition are 5:00 pm on February 3rd, 11th, 18th and 23rd.
Real-life attorneys will score each evening’s competition and total marks will determine which which teams proceed through to the finals, which are scheduled for 5:00 pm, Tuesday, March 1st, in the Ceremonial Courtroom. To volunteer as a juror or a judge, contact the WBA at 724-834-6730.
The Westmoreland Bar Foundation sponsors this local competition, while sponsorship dollars are provided in part by the Westmoreland Academy of Trial Lawyers. Assistant District Attorney Leo Ciaramitaro will serve as the coordinator of the county event.