Cape Henlopen triumphs in mock trial

WILMINGTON — Cape Henlopen High School won the 29th annual Delaware High School Mock Trial Competition last week, the first time a school from Sussex County has won the competition.

Cape topped St. Elizabeth High School in the final round and will now go on to represent Delaware in the National High School Mock Trial Championship in Evansville, Indiana, on May 8 and 9. The win also marks the first time a non-specialized public school has won the mock trial, according to the courts.

In all, 26 teams from public, private, parochial and charter schools throughout Delaware took part in this year’s two-day mock trial competition that involved more than 320 students, 31 teacher/coaches and 47 attorney advisors. More than 200 members of Delaware’s legal community gave their time as judges, bailiffs and volunteers for the competition.

Students on each team spent two days arguing a simulated criminal case involving a death during a rodeo competition. Student teams took turns arguing each side of the case during the competition, with verdicts based on presentation of the case and knowledge of the law.

Student attorneys presented opening statements and closing arguments and questioned “witnesses.”

At the awards banquet after the competition, student Madeline Betts of Cape Henlopen was named most effective attorney and Tanner Dade of Cape Henlopen was named most effective witness. Student Lauren Wilson of Archmere Academy, meanwhile, won the student courtroom sketch artist contest.