RIVERSIDE – After weeks of competition, the 35th Annual Riverside County Mock Trial competition came down to two Riverside Unified School District high schools squaring off in the historic downtown courthouse on Saturday, March 3, 2018, and ended with Martin Luther King High School defeating defending champion Poly High School for the championship.
King’s victory represents their second championship in Riverside County Mock Trial history after previously winning the title in 2007. Third place was shared by Murrieta Valley High School and Ramona High School.
The final four teams entered the courtroom after weeks of competition in courtrooms across the county. In the morning’s semifinal rounds, Poly High School advanced to the finals after defeating Ramona High School and King High School beat out Murrieta Valley High School to reach the final round.
King High School will now represent the county at the California Mock Trial competition to be hosted in Orange County on March 16-18, 2018. The National Mock Trial Competition will be held on May 10-12, 2018, in Reno, Nevada.
This year’s mock trial case involves the death of a member of an extremist nationalist group while another young man from the same town is on trial for murder. The alleged crime is the subject of the fictional court case that more than 500 students from high schools in Riverside County have been arguing during multiple rounds of competition in Indio, Murrieta, and Riverside courtrooms since February 8, 2018.
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, clerks, and more.
The Riverside County Mock Trial is sponsored by the Riverside County Office of Education (RCOE), the Riverside County Bar Association (RCBA), and the Riverside County Superior Courts, in cooperation with the Constitutional Rights Foundation (CRF). Since 1983, more than 13,500 Riverside County students have participated in Mock Trial.