Newton North wins Mock Trial State Championship

Thursday, Mar. 31, 2016
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Newton North High School was named State Champion of the Massachusetts Bar Association's 2016 High School Mock Trial Program. Photos by Jeff Thiebauth.

Newton North High School was named State Champion of the Massachusetts Bar Association's 2016 High School Mock Trial Program on March 29. The state title is the school's 10th since 1988, with their most recent prior championship coming in 2004.

Next up for Newton North is the National High School Mock Trial Championship in Boise, Idaho, May 12-14. A portion of their trip will be funded by a $2,500 donation from the Massachusetts Bar Association's philanthropic partner, the Massachusetts Bar Foundation.

Newton North and Boston Latin School competed in a two-hour mock trial in Faneuil Hall's Great Hall. In the fictional scenario at issue, Boston Latin School represented the plaintiff, a former star soccer player who was diagnosed with terminal cancer in 2014, and Newton North represented the defendant, a doctor who performed heart surgery on the plaintiff in 2011 after the plaintiff suffered heart failure following a game.

Hon. Mark D Mason, Massachusetts Superior Court, presided over the mock trial and was assisted by Hon. John D. Casey, Massachusetts Probate and Family Court, and Hon. Margaret R. Guzman, Massachusetts District Court. All three judges commended the students on both teams for performing at such a high-level.

"All students conducted themselves in a manner which was more than competent. A manner which demonstrated truly the very best that our profession has to offer," said Judge Mason in his remarks after the trial. "You have all demonstrated an achievement in advocacy, which is rarely reserved even for the finest lawyers."

Started in 1985, the Massachusetts Bar Association's Mock Trial Program began its 31st year in January. The 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. More than 1,500 students at 127 high schools competed in this year's competition.

Massachusetts Bar Association President Robert W. Harnais welcomed the students to the historic venue, and thanked the families and coaches of both teams for their support.

"I am delighted to welcome our finalists here to the Great Hall in Faneuil Hall -- the place where thousands of new lawyers get sworn in each year," said Harnais. "Perhaps many of you will go on to become part of the Massachusetts legal community."

Click here to view event photos.