January 26, 2011
St. John’s University participated in the 3rd
Annual Fordham University Invitational Mock Trial Tournament during
the weekend of January 22-23. Sixteen teams across the country and
the New York metropolitan area participated.
Red Storm captured second place, finishing undefeated with an
overall record of seven wins, no losses and one tie. The tournament
champion was the University of Pennsylvania, which finished with a
perfect 8-0 record. In four rounds of trials, St. John’s defeated
Rutgers, Johns Hopkins, Seton Hall and home team Fordham, with one
of the two scoring ballots in the Fordham trial ending in the tie.
In addition to the team’s second place finish, team member Xuan
Gong (Soph. SJC) earned an individual top ten witness award
portraying a toxicologist as an expert witness.
"This was by far the team’s best effort of this season. It
clearly shows that we have a talented a well balanced team that
should continue to do well at the upcoming Regional and National
levels" said Professor Bernard Helldorfer, who coaches of the team
along with Professor Oscar Holt.
The St. John’s team consists of ten undergraduate students from
across the University. The competition simulates a real court case,
with students playing the roles of attorneys for both the plaintiff
and defense, and as witnesses. Points are awarded based on the
students’ individual performances. The case for this year is a
civil lawsuit brought by the parents of a child who swallowed small
beads used to make children’s jewelry which were coated with a
dangerous chemical substance.
St. John’s moves on to the Atlantic Regional tournament at
Lafayette College in Easton, PA on February 11-13.