Kentucky law students win mock-trial regional
LEXINGTON, Ky. (February 13, 2006) – Four students from the UK College of Law Black Law Student Association (BLSA) won the Thurgood Marshall Mock Trial Southern Regional Competition this weekend in Durham, N.C. They will be one of only 12 teams to advance to compete in the Thurgood Marshall Mock Trial National Competition held March 22-26 in Washington, D.C.
The UK team of Viola Forbin, Anthony Gray, Valorie Smith and Brandi Stewart defeated a competitive field of 28 teams representing prestigious law schools such as Vanderbilt University to clinch the title.
Mock trial tests a law students’ ability to try a case alternately as both the prosecutor and defense counsel. To succeed in competition, participants must be articulate, persuasive and think well on their feet, as well as being skilled in making opening statements, witness examinations, cross examinations and closing arguments.
Local attorney and UK College of Law graduate Robert Houlihan coached the team to victory. Houlihan mentored mock trial team member Valorie Smith as a first-year law student as part of the Kentucky Legal Education Opportunities program, and Smith asked him to work with the team.
“Our team had some tough fights but they were more adept in basic trial court skills. They gave better opening statements, direct examinations, cross examinations and closing arguments. They dribbled the ball better,” said Houlihan, a partner with Savage Elliott Houlihan Moore Mullins & Erdmann.
Posted by Michael Stevens on Monday, March 13, 2006