5 Kane County Teams Finish in State Mock Trial Elite

5 Kane County Teams Finish in State Mock Trial Elite

We’re not bragging but … OK, maybe we are bragging.

Hinsdale Central was the big winner, but five Kane County high school teams took part and had great showings in the state mock trial competition last week, and St. Charles North came in a close second.

Hinsdale Central High School placed first in the 33rd annual Illinois State Bar Association High School Mock Trial Invitational held at the University of Illinois College of Law in Champaign March 14 and 15, 2015.

St. Charles North High School was runnerup, and third place went to Chicago Christian High School in Palos Heights. Evanston Township High School received the Donna Schechter Award for the highest team average on the Written Law Exam, which was administered in conjunction with the Invitational.

Teams from 42 Illinois high schools traveled to Champaign to participate in the program. Hinsdale Central will represent Illinois at the National High School Mock Trial Championship in Raleigh, NC. Kane County schools included St. Charles North, St. Charles East, the Illinois Mathematics & Science Academy, Huntley Consolidated and Bartlett.

“The mock trial competition lived up to its billing this year, with solid competition from throughout the state,” said the Hon. Michael J. Chmiel of Woodstock, chair of the ISBA’s Standing Committee on Law Related Education for the Public, which conducts the program. “The student competitors were well-prepared and very civil, and all augurs well for the legal profession in the future.”

Each 10-member team tries both sides — plaintiff and defense — of a hypothetical case developed by the ISBA Committee. This year’s case was People of the State of Illinois vs. Casey Jones, a criminal case in which the defendant is charged with home invasion and aggravated battery in connection with a break-in at the home of the defendant’s former paramour.

The High School Mock Trial Invitational has been conducted each year since 1982 by the ISBA to provide Illinois high school students an interesting and challenging way to gain insight into the American judicial system. Co-sponsors of the 2015 event are Illinois LEARN, Inc.; the Illinois Trial Team of the University of Illinois; and the University of Illinois College of Law.

The 33,000-member ISBA, with offices in Springfield and Chicago, provides professional services to Illinois lawyers, and education and services to the public through a lawfinder.com website, consumer brochures, and distribution of legal information.

Individual Awards

From St. Charles North:

  • Outstanding Witnesses: Vince Valeriano, Ryan Wolnak
  • Outstanding Attorneys:  Kiersten Aalfs, Jimmy Fleck

From St. Charles East:

  • Outstanding Attorneys:  Julie Jezek, Blake VanKerkhoff