Images from the 2014 Mock Trial Competition.
Photos by Jeff Thiebauth.
In a rematch of last year's state final, the Winsor School of
Boston defeated Pioneer Valley Performing Arts Charter Public
School of South Hadley to repeat as State Champion in the 29th
annual High School Mock Trial Program presented by the
Massachusetts Bar Association.
The Winsor School advances to the National High School Mock
Trial Championship in Madison, WI, May 8-10. A portion of their
trip will be funded by a donation from the Mass. Bar Association's
philanthropic partner, the Massachusetts Bar Foundation. The
championship marks the third state title for Winsor since 2010.
Faneuil Hall's Great Hall served as a historic backdrop for the
more than two-hour trial between two teams that have combined to
win six of the last 10 championships, including the last five.
Pioneer Valley won in 2005, 2011 and 2012.
Winsor School represented the plaintiff, the child of a stunt
pilot who died performing an advanced aerobatic maneuver, who
asserted that the defendant, Carborite Aircraft Inc., failed to
design the plane to withstand the standard amount of g-force
necessary for a stunt plane in order to save money. Pioneer Valley
represented the defendant (Carborite), who contended that the plane
was designed correctly, and that the plane's maximum permitted
g-force was only exceeded because of the negligent actions of the
Massachusetts Superior Court Judge Howard Whitehead presided
over the mock trial, and was assisted by Superior Court Judge Kathe
Tuttman and Superior Court Judge S. Jane Haggerty. The judges
commended the students for performing as well as the seasoned
lawyers they see in their actual courtrooms each day.
"It is certainly an honor to serve as a judge of the Superior
Court and to participate in such a direct way in our democracy.
However, it is even a greater honor to come to this beautiful
building, which is known as 'the cradle of liberty' and participate
in teaching young people about the workings of that democracy,"
said Judge Whitehead. "Although we say it every year, it is a fact
that the students have performed as well as actual trial
"It's incredible to be here in a location where our forefathers
made decisions that shaped our country," added MBA President
Douglas K. Sheff in his address to the students. "You are the
future trial lawyers. Regardless of today's outcome, all of you
have already won by making it this far."
The annual competition places high school teams from across the
state in simulated courtroom situations where they assume the roles
of lawyers, defendants and witnesses in hypothetical cases. A total
of 139 teams competed in this year's competition which featured 211
trials, 106 judges and more than 40 court venues across the state.
The program is administered by the Mass. Bar Association with
support from the Brown Rudnick Charitable Foundation Corp. and the
Massachusetts Bar Foundation (MBF).
MBF President Robert J. Ambrogi was on hand to congratulate the
Winsor School Mock Trial Team and present them with a contribution
of $2,500 to help with travel costs as they advance to compete in
the national competition in May.
here to view event images.