RCOE Highlights

March 5, 2015

Final Four Local High School Teams Advance to Mock Trial Semifinals, New Champions to be Crowned on Saturday, March 7

Hemet, Great Oak, King, and four-time consecutive champion Poly High School advance to final day of competition on Saturday, March 7

RIVERSIDE – The same four mock trial teams from the 2014 semifinals will face off again this Saturday for a chance to compete in the finals of the 32nd Annual Riverside County Mock Trial Competition. The semifinals will begin at 9 a.m. while the final round will start promptly at 1 p.m. at the Riverside Historic Courthouse (4050 Main Street, Riverside).

The pairings for the semifinal round are as follows:

Prosecution: Great Oak HS (Temecula) vs. Defense: Hemet HS (Hemet)

Prosecution: Poly HS (Riverside) vs. Defense: Martin Luther King HS (Riverside)

The competition is free and open to the public. Those interested in attending are encouraged to arrive early as seating is limited and late entry will not be permitted. Following the final round, an awards presentation will feature medals and trophies for placing first, second, or third (two third place teams rather than third and fourth place).

Mock Trial involves students arguing cases in front of real judges and scored by real attorneys. The competition is open to all students in grades 9 through 12 enrolled in public and private high schools in Riverside County. Teams consist of 8-25 students filling the courtroom roles of defense and prosecution attorneys, witnesses, clerk, and more. The winning county team will represent Riverside County at the California Mock Trial competition to be held March 20-22 in Riverside.

In this year’s event, students are arguing the fictional case entitled: People v. Shem.  People v. Shem is the trial of Evan Shem, who is studying for a Master’s of Fine Arts degree at Hamiltonia University. Shem faces one felony count, theft by larceny, for the theft of Treason, a painting by Fletcher Yazoo. The Riverside County Mock Trial is sponsored by Riverside County Office of Education (RCOE), Riverside County Bar Association (RCBA), and Riverside County Superior Court, in cooperation with the Constitutional Rights Foundation (CRF). Since 1983, more than 12,000 students have participated in Mock Trial in Riverside County.