Welcome to the 2016 Capital City ORCS! The tournament will take place Saturday, March 19 and Sunday, March 20, 2016, at the beautiful H. Carl Moultrie in downtown Washington, D.C. If you have any questions, please contact Sarah Sawtelle.
As the name implies, mock trial is a simulated trial experience. Two teams face off with three witness and three attorneys each and argue a fictional case. This year’s case is a criminal case involving an alleged bribe of a gambling commissioner. Each case has a variety of witnesses and strategies that the teams can choose from as they present their facts.
Cases are based in the fictional state of Midlands, which has its own rules of evidence based on the Federal Rules of Evidence as well as its own case law, which teams may cite during the round.
You are being asked to score the teams based on how well they present their cases, not necessarily whether they would secure a favorable verdict. There will be a presentation on-site to go over the basics, but you can look at a sample ballot now and you will receive a judge-orientation session before the round(s) you judge.
You will be part of a panel. Due to the subjective nature of the activity it helps to have multiple judges in each round. One member will act as the trial judge and others will score the competitors, some will do both at the same time, which is harder than you may think.
While it helps to be familiar with the general structure of a mock trial round, the teams can answer any questions you have about how the trial flows.
No. It helps to be familiar with the rules of evidence, but teams can provide copies of all rules and case law if the need arises during the trial. We actually prefer for judges to leave any knowledge of the case at the door and hear each round de novo. If you want to read them, the Midlands Rules of Evidence can be found here.
Thanks to the UVA Law School for making the 2016 Capital City ORCS possible.
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