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Bishop Kelley High School Takes Sixth in Statewide Mock Trial Competition


OBA committee member presents Bishop Kelley High School team members with their Oklahoma Mock Trial sixth-place award.


(Oklahoma City – March 8) – Bishop Kelley High School’s mock trial team took sixth place in the semifinal round of the 2017 Oklahoma High School Mock Trial competition. Bishop Kelley was one of eight teams from across the state to advance to the semifinals. Jenks High School ultimately won the state championship during the final round of competition Tuesday evening.

The eight teams that moved on to the semifinals advanced through a field of 34 teams representing 22 schools across the state. Competition began in late January. Other high schools advancing to the semifinals were Owasso (three teams), Jenks (two teams), Clinton and Broken Arrow high schools.

Bishop Kelley High School’s team is coached by teacher Colin Manning, and its attorney coaches are A.J. Hoffland and Emma Arnet. Team members are Leah Craddock, Abbey Doyle, Shelby Flahive, Kelsey Griffin, Dane Gustafson, Joseph Kissel, Danielle Lewallen, Sarah Marshall, Sydney Thorpe and Sarah Walter.

The competition involves teams of students taking on the roles of attorneys and defendants. The “trials” are heard by a judge and attorneys in a courtroom setting where individual and team performances are evaluated. This year’s mock trial is a case focused on the civil prosecution of a drilling company whose fracking is thought to be the cause of a 6.2 magnitude earthquake that destroyed the downtown of Wheatville.

“The Mock Trial Program provides students with an opportunity to gain a unique insider’s perspective of the American legal process,” Oklahoma Bar Association Linda Thomas of Bartlesville said. “The OBA congratulates these eight teams for their hard work, and we are excited for Jenks High School to represent Oklahoma at the national competition in Hartford, Connecticut, in May.”

The Mock Trial Program is sponsored and funded by the Oklahoma Bar Foundation and the Oklahoma Bar Association Young Lawyers Division. Nearly 400 judges and attorneys volunteered their time to work with mock trial teams as coaches and to conduct the competitions.

The foundation, through its grants and awards program, allocates funds to nonprofit agencies and programs like mock trial. The mission of the foundation is to ensure justice is possible for all Oklahomans through the promotion of law, education and access to justice. The 17,600-member Oklahoma Bar Association, headquartered in Oklahoma City, was created by the Oklahoma Supreme Court to advance the administration of justice and to foster and maintain learning, integrity, competence, public service and high standards of conduct among Oklahoma’s legal community.