Yorkton Regional High School students brought home two of the top awards from the 2012 McKercher Cup Mock Trial Competition on the weekend.
Grade 10 student Kiara Hudy received the April 21 competition’s award for Best Prosecutor and Grade 12 student Tato Crisanto was named Best Defence Lawyer.
One of the two YRHS teams sent to the competition, consisting of lawyers Kendra Bailey, Carolyn Hauser, and Tato Crisanto and witnesses Jacalyn Molnar, Donald-Paul Miller, Felcon Swain, and Tayler Walker, came in second overall among the competition’s five teams. The winning team was St. Mary High School of Prince Albert.
Hudy and Crisanto, who competed on separate teams in separate pools, were both surprised with their awards. All teams in the competition were required to argue both sides of the criminal trial of a teenager accused of possessing a stolen handgun.
“Our defence one wasn’t very good,” said Hudy. “We talked way too fast. In our prosecuting one, we were more comfortable. We talked slower and got to the point more.”
“It was the opposite for us,” said Crisanto. “As defence, we felt very comfortable. We talked at a good pace and felt comfortable with our case—it was very strong.”
Crisanto’s team felt much less confident about their performance for the Crown, which was generally considered to have a weaker case to work with.
“It was a sure case for defence,” said Crisanto.
The lopsided evidence made Hudy all the more pleased to win the award for Best Prosecutor. Although the defendant was acquitted in every instance of the mock trial, the students were scored on their use of the evidence they had to work with rather than the outcome.
“I was pretty happy because prosecution was the harder thing to fight, because there was no proof of anything the defendant had done,” said Hudy.
It was the second year of participation in Mock Trial for both girls. Hudy intends to continue participating during her next two years of school, but Crisanto graduates this year.
“I wish I’d started earlier,” she said. “It was a lot of fun. Our group was so diverse. You know how high school gets cliquey and stuff, but this was everyone from every group. You get to bond with them all.”
Hudy is thinking seriously about becoming a lawyer.
“I’m not sure yet, but that’s kind of the path I’m headed in.”
But as much as Crisanto enjoyed Mock Trial, law is not a career she plans to pursue. She’s heading to university for engineering—“definitely not law.”
“I don’t like lawyers,” she laughed. “I like arguing, but I don’t like lawyers, so I’m not going to be one.”