Students experience law and order

Grace Gallagher

A group within our community is working on prosecuting the murderer of a Minnesota girl who was suffocated by a pillow. No, they’re not lawyers or attorneys, they are the mock trial team.

After their undefeated season last year, the team is expected to excel in its competitions and hopes to rack up enough points to qualify for the subsequent round of matches, following their first three in January. “We’re hoping to make it farther than ever this year,” said junior captain Jen Vogl.

Each year, the team is given a case in which they must prosecute or defend a suspect in a mock trial. “It’s essentially a court case,” said junior Patrick Freese.

This year, the team will be presenting a case that revolves around a murder that took place in Minnesota where the victim was suffocated with a pillow. This trial, along with other cases, are very similar to shows on television. “It’s like an episode of ‘Law and Order,’” said junior Michael Gerten.

After losing many senior members a few years ago, the mock trial team had a tough time rebounding and spent the past three years rebuilding their program. This year, the squad gained three new members but maintained most of its core players from the past two years. “Every year has been kind of been a building year,” said Vogl.

Before the final trials, the team prepares for months in order to fine tune their case. When the trials arrive, the team competes with their opponent and must win over the judge in order to move on in the competition.

The mock trial team must also earn more points than the opposing squad to reach the next round. “Each person starts with a score of ten; if they use their notes or get a fact wrong, they get deducted,” said Vogl.

Although the trial itself is exciting, the members agree their favorite part is preparing before, and talking after, the trial is finished. “Some statements made in the trial are really funny to joke about later,” said Gerten.

The team will come together to take down their opponents in the upcoming trials. They’re sure to have fun along the way, practicing and joking around. “We’re like a big family,” said Vogl.