Mock justice is semi-served


dsc_0027Photo by Alan M. Dumoff







Margaret Bekham, bailiff, swears in a St. Joseph High School student during the mock trial competition in the Mays Landing Criminal Court House.

HAMMONTON — Students from St. Joseph High School made it to the semi-finals in the annual mock trial competition held earlier this year in the Mays Landing Criminal Court House.

“We won the first two rounds,” said Joseph Regina, a social studies teacher who has been mock trial advisor for the past two years. “We lost in the finals. But last year we didn’t make it out of the first rounds. We just might make it to the finals next year.”

Mock trial teams from high schools around the state competed in January in the Vincent J. Apruzzese New Jersey Mock Trial competition, sponsored by the New Jersey State Bar Foundation.

The case all the teams had to handle centered around the death of a show dog. The owners said a flea treatment caused the death.

The first leg of the competition was on the county level. These winners went to the regionals held Feb. 5 which will be followed by the finals in New Brunswick at the New Jersey Law Center on March 20. The state champion then heads for the national competition.

Regina said those of his 10-member mock trial team who played witnesses received affidavits “which told a fictional story that was based on a real civil trial.”

Members of the mock trial team and the roles they played included, Danielle Mulligan, witness; Kayla Harris, witness/ plaintiff; Caitlin Jacoby, witness; Brianna Lucas, witness; Ed Collins, witness; Kevin Johnson, witness; Daniel McNeil, plaintiff attorney; Sean Tomasello, plaintiff attorney; Abigail Tucker, defense attorney; and Taylor Jacoby, defense attorney.