Mock Trial Teams Begin their 6th Season of Competition

October 26, 2018

The case is The State of Nebraska Vs. Ricky/Ricki Glossner, and the charges include Delivery of a Controlled Substance, a Class IIA Felony, and Tampering with a Witness or Informant, a Class IV Felony.  If this sounds real enough, it is……at least for the twenty members of Lexington High School’s three Mock Trial teams.  The teams begin their competitive season in Ogallala on Monday, October 29. 

Sponsored by the Nebraska State Bar Foundation and its State Center for Law-Related Education, Mock Trial allows about a thousand youth across Nebraska to practice as attorneys and witnesses in a realistic court case.  Most competitions take place in court houses, and the students use the tables and witness stands, and even ask for permission to “approach the bench” to speak to judges, who are themselves volunteer judges and attorneys who help students understand the processes and environment of the court.   

Team members promise to compete with “the highest standards of deportment” and focus on “accepting defeat and success with dignity and restraint,” part of the Code of Ethical Conduct which aims to develop a deeper understanding and appreciation of the legal system for each participant.  Lexington’s attorney coach is Brian Copley, who has volunteered for five years to instruct both attorneys and witnesses.  Besides conduct, students in attorney roles learn how to present arguments, make objections, properly administer a line of direct questioning and cross examination.  Witnesses learn how to give reliable testimony from affadavits and face a line of questioning from a competitor’s attorney.  Team alternates act as timers for their team.   

Lexington is fortunate to have three active teams.  This year, the teams decided to use L-E-X for designation.  Members of the L Team are attorneys Christopher Gomez, Darlene Gomez and Emily Briones.  Witnesses are Stephanie Vielmas, Darlyn Gonzalez and Erick Estrada.  Their alternate is Edwin Lopez.

Members of E Team are attorneys Joslyn Sayer, Kimberly Gomez and Mariani Tena.  Witnesses are Nayely Guido, Celia Wightman and Javier Garcia. Alternate is Falhado Mohamed.   

Members of X Team are attorneys Keith Allen, Estefani Andrade and Marcus Cureton.  Witnesses are Kennia Garcia, Jazmin Guzman and Jennifer Espitia.  

Teams will compete in North Platte on November 1 and again in Lexington at the Dawson County Courthouse on November 5.   

Teacher sponsors for the teams are Melanie Chesley and Daniel Arias.  

Attorney Christopher Gomez questions witness Stephanie Vielmas as attorneys Emily Briones and Darlene Gomez observe.

Team members of Lexington’s other two teams wait their turns. L to R Joslyn Sayer, Marcus Cureton, Estefani Andrade, Keith Allen, Jennifer Espitia, Kimberly Gomez, Nayely Guido, Falhado Mohamed, Celia Wightman.