St. John’s University participated in the 15th Annual
Yale University Invitational Mock Trial Tournament during the
weekend of December 3-5. 38 teams from some of the best
colleges and universities across the country were invited by Yale
to participate in what has become the most prestigious pre-season
preparation for the upcoming national tournament.
St. John’s captured sixth place with an overall record of
5-3. The University of Florida was crowned tournament champion
with a 7-1 record; their only defeat came at the hands of St.
In addition to defeating Florida, the team, which consists of 10
undergraduate students from across the University, also bested
Syracuse University, Brandeis University and Carlton
St. John’s Coaches, Professors Bernard Helldorfer and Oscar
Holt, were pleased with the outcome, especially considering the
level of the competition, which included some very strong academic
The competition simulates a real court case with students
playing the roles of attorneys for the plaintiff and the defense,
as well as witnesses. Points are awarded based on the students’
individual performances. The case for this year is a civil lawsuit
brought by the parents of a two year-old child who are suing the
makers of small beads used to make children’s jewelry which were
coated with a dangerous chemical substance.
St. John’s now looks forward to its final preseason tournament
at Fordham University, January 29-30 and the Regional Round of the
national tournament which will take place at Lafayette College in
Pennsylvania February 11-13.