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Student “legal eagles” in mock trial contest

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IT was like any other case at Warrington Combined Court centre – except that all the participants were students.
A panel of magistrates looked on as students from Priestley College and Barrow Hall College pitted their wits against each other in a mock trial based around a fictional domestic violence case.
At the end of the hearing, the “judges” decided Priestley had won the day after a keenly contested “trial.”
One of the star performers awards went to Priestley’s Tara Robinson,
who is studying a BTEC in Law along with A-Levels in Psychology and
Sociology. She played the role of a prosecution lawyer.
Afterwards, she said: “It gave me a valuable insight into the preparation a lawyer must do for court as well as the experience of being an advocate in a real courtroom.
“It enabled me to put myself in the shoes of a real lawyer and has confirmed my ambition to pursue a career in law hopefully as a barrister. After Priestley my next goal is to progress onto a law degree.”
Students were given the scenario ahead of their court appearance so they could prepare fully. They were told there had been a common assault, which was to be tried as an “episode of domestic violence”.
Priestley and Barrow Hall each prepared a defence and a prosecution case with students taking on a variety of roles including lawyers, witnesses and defendants.
Priestley law tutor Christian Oliver said taking their arguments to the Warrington Combined Court helped students fully embrace their roles.
He said: “They are all aspiring towards careers in law so this was a great opportunity for them.
“It definitely brought out the best in the students from both colleges. The magistrates commented that the overall standard was exceptionally high.”

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