TRENTON, NJ - After weeks of painstaking research, writing and practice, twelve 7th grade legal eagles from Warren Middle School presented two award-winning mock trial cases in front of a presiding judge and an audience of more than 200 people on May 18.

As part of the New Jersey State Bar Foundation’s Law Adventure program, the students with E2 teacher Susan Cooper had previously submitted two mock cases to the organization’s mock trial competition, winning 1st place and Honorable Mention. The students then presented each case before Judge Francine I. Axelrad at the New Jersey Law Center in New Brunswick. Out of 111 mock trial competition entries, only 12 awards were given... two of them to Warren Middle School students.

The 1st place winner -- “The Case of was Thrate a Threat” -- had the 7th grade team arguing the issue of whether a fictional 13-year-old with Asperger’s Syndrome presented a threat when repeating the words “bomb, bomb, bomb” after learning about suicide bombers during a social studies lesson on current events. Team members on this mock case were Adithi Adusumilli, Mia Kolb, Inica Kotasthane, Arjun Singh, Anya Solanki, Moha Trivedi and Zoe Wang.

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“The Case of Parent Responsibility or Police Responsibility,” which received Honorable Mention recognition, involved a fictional single parent who is fined for not exercising parental responsibility to control his daughter’s delinquent behavior but who is also suing the fictional police department for violating an agreement to help his daughter instead of arresting her. Students arguing this mock case were Arshia Agrawal, Sheridan Ameo, Savannah Bellovin, Ariha Mehta and Andrew Shi.

Eighth grader Jordyn Youngelson served as a consultant to the 7th grade teams and also was recognized at the mock trial competition.


Photo Credit: Warren Township Schools

Photo #1 - Warren Middle School 7th graders won 1st place and Honorable Mention in two mock trial cases presented before Judge Francine I. Axelrad at the New Jersey Law Center on May 18. Top Row (L-R): Judge Francine I. Axelrad, Inica Kotasthane, Adithi Adusumilli, Mia Kolb, E2 Teacher Susan Cooper, Ariha Mehta, Sheridan Ameo, Jordyn Youngelson, Arya Singh. 

Bottom Row (L-R): Andrew Shi, Savannah Bellovin, Anya Solanki, Moha Trivedi, Arshia Agrawal, Zoe Wang