May 20, 2022 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

JAMS, Samohi Mock Trial Teams Fare Well In County-Wide Competition:

Hard work and determination paid off for John Adams Middle School students participating on the mock trial team finishing in the top 12 of 52 teams, in a recent County-wide competition sponsored by the Constitutional Rights Foundation (CRF).

Santa Monica High School students also fared well, finishing in the top 16 of 94 teams competing. JAMS student Parker Lauer received an award as the defense attorney of the year, selected by the judges, which is quite an honor for a middle school student.

The John Adams Middle School (JAMS) mock trial program was started in 2009 by two JAMS parents who were senior trial attorneys with the Los Angeles County public defender’s office, Bill Sadler, who is now a Los Angeles Superior Court Commissioner and Joel Koury, who runs a law firm handling complex criminal cases.

Koury continues to oversee the JAMS mock trial team with help from retired public defender and Los Angeles County Bar Association lawyer of the year, Stuart Glovin. Sadler and Koury both coach the Samohi team, along with Lisa Roth, an experienced deputy public defender, Chris Kanjo, a senior civil attorney that oversees the pretrial motion component of the competition and Glovin.

The JAMS team selection process begins each spring with teachers’ recommendations and an application process that is vetted by the administration. Team members are ultimately chosen by the coaches. The JAMS mock trial team has finished in the top four finalists out of 50 schools in recent years and regularly wins against private and parochial schools that have full time teachers and coaches.

Each team consists of 16 students that meet after school twice a week during the fall to prepare for competition against other Los Angeles schools by trying a mock criminal case. The case is heard in Los Angeles superior court downtown before a working judge who has been selected and organized by the CRF.

“I can’t thank Joel and Stuart enough for their hard work,” Steve Richardson, JAMS principal, said. “They have developed invaluable critical thinking skills in our kids and also provided a small glimpse into an exciting career option. And, of course, I am in awe of our students, their

commitment to this demanding task and their ability to shine in a high pressure situation. The mock trial program is a gift to our school and community.”

The Samohi mock trial selection process begins very early in the school year. All prospective mock trial team members are invited to attend a two day seminar held at school. During those two days, students learn issues dealing with criminal law and procedure, Constitutional law, trial advocacy, evidentiary rules including hearsay and its exceptions. Students take turns arguing hypothetical cases and are assessed for team placement.

“We are so proud of all our dedicated students who participate in mock trial,” Eva Mayoral, Samohi principal, said. “Our students have full class schedules, frequently are involved in music or other extracurricular activities and ASB, and still make the time and commitment to thrive in this amazing learning experience.”

Team roles include bailiff, court staff, testifying witnesses, prosecuting attorneys and defense attorneys. The competition inspires and teaches the students about constitutional rights, legal analysis, formulating an argument and public speaking.

“The competition is an amazing combination of moot court, debate and theater!” Yolanda Lewis, JAMS parent said.

in News
Related Posts

Motional And UberEats Launch Autonomous Deliveries In Santa Monica

May 18, 2022

May 18, 2022

There Are Plans For Expansion Into The Rest Of Los Angeles Motional, a global driverless technology leader, and Uber Technologies...

Winston Pies Opening Third Location In Santa Monica

May 18, 2022

May 18, 2022

The restaurant used to be known as ButterCrust Pies Winston Pies is staying in Santa Monica when opening their third...

Only 10 Vaquita Porpoises Survive, But The Species May Not Be Doomed

May 17, 2022

May 17, 2022

Hope remains for the porpoise species not only survive but thrive with human help. By Stuart Wolpert The vaquita porpoise,...

The American Cinematheque Brings “Bleak Week” To Santa Monica’s Aero Theatre And The Los Feliz Three Theatre

May 17, 2022

May 17, 2022

33 Films From 18 Countries In One Week. By Dolores Quintana Sometimes when things are tough and you’re feeling down,...

Man Who Murdered His Family Members Pleads Guilty To Five Other Killings

May 16, 2022

May 16, 2022

Escobar injured an additional seven other people as well.  By Dolores Quintana A man, Ramon Escobar, has pleaded guilty to...

The price of gasoline in Los Angeles County Has Experienced The Largest Increase Since February

May 16, 2022

May 16, 2022

Gasoline prices in Orange County Have Also Increased By Dolores Quintana Regular self-serve gasoline in the county of Los Angeles...

Santa Monica Travel Summit Of 2022 Returns To Take On Tomorrow

May 16, 2022

May 16, 2022

The Event Was Held At The Jonathan Club On Santa Monica Beach By Staff Writer The 2022 Santa Monica Tourism...

City Council Extends Santa Monica’s Parklet Program: Santa Monica Beat – May 16th, 2022

May 16, 2022

May 16, 2022

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes.* City Council Extends Santa Monica’s Parklet Program * Santa Monica High School Students...

1221 Ocean Avenue Complex Sold For Record Price

May 16, 2022

May 16, 2022

Sold for a record price of $330 million. By Dolores Quintana The Irvine Company has sold 1221 Ocean Avenue to...

Office Construction Is Starting To Rise In Los Angeles

May 15, 2022

May 15, 2022

Property vacancies are still affecting growth.  By Dolores Quintana In March, the Los Angeles Metropolitan area had 3.2 million square...

Santa Monica City Council Selects Doug Sloan as New City Attorney

May 12, 2022

May 12, 2022

At its meeting this week, the Santa Monica City Council appointed Doug Sloan to serve as Santa Monica’s next City...

Landmark Theater Closing in Former Westside Pavillion

May 12, 2022

May 12, 2022

Theater will close at the end of month By Sam Catanzaro The Landmark Pico theater at the former Westside Pavillion...

Community Policing at the Heart of Beat Four

May 11, 2022

May 11, 2022

The Neighborhood Resource Officer (NRO) Program thrives through community involvement and collective work. Today we hear from Officer Aaron Alpert...

Santa Monica High School Among Top-900 Schools in Country

May 10, 2022

May 10, 2022

SAMOHI ranked 829 out of over 18,000 total schools By Staff Writer Santa Monica High School is among the top...

Pico Marketplace Changing Small Businesses Access to Retail Space: Santa Monica Beat – May 10th, 2022

May 10, 2022

May 10, 2022

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes.* Pico Marketplace Changing Small Businesses Access to Retail Space* Grunion Fish Seen...