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Stetson Law host to national mock trial tournament


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Gulfport, Fla. - George Washington University won the American Mock Trial Association’s National Intercollegiate Mock Trial Tournament at Stetson University College of Law on March 13. Forty-eight teams of undergraduate college students representing 42 institutions attended this competition.

The final round was judged by Federal Judge Virginia M. Hernandez Covington of the Middle District of Florida; U.S. Magistrate Judge Thomas B. McCoun III of the Middle District of Florida; and State Attorney Bernie McCabe of the Sixth Judicial Circuit of Florida.

George Washington won the Dean W. Gary Vause Division and defeated Yale University, champions of the Honorable Jerry R. Parker Division, in the finals. The Vause Division is named after late Stetson Law Dean W. Gary Vause and the Parker Division after late Judge Jerry R. Parker from the Florida 2nd District Court of Appeal. Competitions took place at the Stetson Law Gulfport campus and the Circuit Civil Courtroom in St. Petersburg. Tampa Bay judges, attorneys and Stetson professors judged the trials.

“Stetson was proud to host such a prominent competition featuring the top college advocates from across the nation,” said Roberta Flowers, Stetson Law Professor and director of the college’s Center for Excellence in Advocacy. “As one of the top advocacy law schools in the country, we are glad to see so many students sharpening their talents.”

Southern Methodist University and the University of Missouri-Kansas City received the Spirit of AMTA Award, which honors professionalism. The AMTA Congressman Neil Smith Award for lifetime achievement was given to Manchester Community College Coach Bob Bowland, who was unable to attend the competition because of his fight with cancer.

The top four teams from this tournament advance to the National Championship Tournament in April in Des Moines, Iowa.