BLOOMFIELD, NJ – Bloomfield High School’s Mock Trial Team, who recently competed in the New Jersey State Bar Foundation Vincent J. Apruzzese Mock Trial Competition, had their achievements recognized by Mayor Michael Venezia and the Township Council at Monday night’s Council Meeting.
The competition is held annually in January, and the Bloomfield students put forth an impressive showing last month.
“The Essex County Mock Trial Competition is sponsored and organized by the Essex County Bar Association where Essex County attorneys, prosecutors, public defenders and judges volunteer their time to preside over the evening competitions traditionally held in the Essex County Superior Court over three weeks,” said Councilwoman Jenny Mundell. “In the first round of the competition, the Bloomfield High School Plaintiff Team defeated James Caldwell High School, and in the second round of the competition, the Defense Team defeated Seton Hall Prep to advance to the quarterfinals against Columbia High School.”
The students competed on January 12 and 13 against the other Essex County High School Mock Trial Teams and emerged victorious both nights.
In Round 1 and 2 of the competition, the students prepared the Mock Trial Civil Case of Eli Adam, Estate of Nancy Adam, and Kai Cruz v. City of Metropolitan prepared by the NJ State Bar Foundation.
In the quarterfinals on January 19, Bloomfield lost by one point after a 50-minute deliberation by the judges. However, Bloomfield’s performances were outstanding, and the students received accolades from the judges who presided over the trials.
“The students were incredibly well-prepared having invested countless hours during the weeks and weekends leading up to this competition held in a new virtual format that further contributed to the stress of the competition,” Mundell added. “But the students were polished, professional and maintained their composure and respect for the Rules of Civil Procedure and the Rule of Law in some very tense moments during the competition.”
Members of the 2021 Bloomfield High School Mock Trial Team that were honored include plaintiff attorneys Alanna Belevitch and Veronica Reyes; defense attorneys Sharv Dave and Alanna Belevitch; witnesses Chino Anyanwu, Glory Kalu, Wilson Merchan, David Odekunle, John V. Aton and Alexander Wolfe; and jurors Lina Nweiran, Natalia Valdez, Zachary Bazile and Jada Rowe.
The Mock Trial Team is led by advisor Ms. Lenore Imhof, Esq.
“Most of these students have been members for the past three years and they weren’t going to let anything from stopping them from competing this year,” said Imhof. “This recognition truly made our year.”
Monday’s Council proceedings were held via video conference, and live-streamed on the township’s Facebook page, YouTube Page, and WBMA-TV.