Mock Trial heading to the Blair County Courthouse


Kerry Naylor

The B-A Mock Trial team is preparing to open its season next week. Team members include, front (l to r): Kaelyn Toland, Madison Brinkman, Trinity Maines, Emily Zacker, and Abigail Laird; back row (l to r): Elayna McCaulley, Olivia Finelli, Wyatt McKendree, Abby Eckenrod, Luke Gurekovich, and Derek Stivers.

Jacob Mercer, Staff Writer

On February 6th and the 13th, the Bellwood-Antis Mock Trial team is heading to the Blair County courthouse to compete against other schools as the PA mock trial season begins.

Mock trial is a form of competitive debate organized each year by the PA Bar Association. Students receive a fictional case from the PA mock trial organization and must put together a case for both the plaintiff and defendant side, using three student lawyers and sit-in students witnesses. Mock trial competitions test and apply students skills in both public speaking and critical thinking.

Led by high school history teacher Mr. Gary Rhone for the last three years, the team has actual experience in competition only for the past two years.

Mr. Rhone explained this year’s mock case as a man who died on an obstacle course and his family wants to collect money from the company who runs the course. The company, Storm Chase, argues that instead it was the man’s fault for his death. So, it is the students job to try and convince the juror and judge who the money should go to.

Cases are judged by a panel of local judges and lawyers at the courthouse.

The students that will be competing will be Kaelyn Toland, Madison Brinkman, Wyatt, Mckendree, Olivia Finelli, Abby Eckenrod, Trinity Maines, Derek Stivers, Emily Zacker, and Luke Gurekovich. Good luck to everyone participating!