An Honorable Team 2008-2009

10.17.09: The Courts have decided a landmark case on file sharing – in many ways identical to the case these students presented.  The case was decided shortly after their competition. The Court held that the individual who allowed songs to be uploaded from their computer was financially responsible for distributing this music illegally.

2008-2009 Vincent J. Apruzzese Mock Trial Competition

CHS Mock Trail Participants

These students prepared for the competition together, but divided for the competition into 2 teams.  A team consists of 2 lawyers & 3 witnesses each. Individual students also attended meetings and served as Jurors.  Jurors were provided to other teams trying cases on the same night to render a decision on their assigned trial.  All teams are to have Jurors.

The Mock Trial Competition is sponsored by the NJ State Bar Foundation in cooperation with New Jersey’s County Bar Association.  Students competed at the Essex County Court House.

This year’s case was about 18 year old Defendant Dillon Matthews who was taken to court by the American Association of Recording Companies (AARC).  The AARC charged that Dillon  “unlawfully downloaded, distributed, and/or made available for distribution music files over a peer-2-peer network.”

Our teams did not continue on to the semi-finals, though they gave commendable performances.  Lawyers and witnesses received direct praise on their performance from Judges.  Praises included:

  • Commendation on  the witness Peter Szafranski for performing on the stand. One judge said of his performance “Definitely what I would expect from a computer expert!”
  • Judges praised a the lawyers of one team, Teddy Lavon & Stephanie Toussaint, for making sure “to figure out what a witness was supposed to add to the case,” giving in particular an “excellent” cross-examination, and “doing a really good job” of “picking apart” witness testimonies.

’08 – ’09 CHS Mock Trail Participants

Stephanie Toussaint
Teddy Lavon
Peter Szafranski
Moss Cohen
Leila Rosenthal

Teacher Advisers: Mr. Jon Campbell & Mrs. Anicel Perez (Both from the Social Studies Department)

Evan Lehrer
Ryan Fitzmartin
Juanica Buchanan
Stephen Monaghan
Mikiyah Faison

© 2010 W. S. Hughes


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