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Dos Pueblos High Captures County Mock Trial Crown, Heads to State Championship

Chargers defeat San Marcos High to earn sixth consecutive Santa Barbara County title

In another epic final against their archrivals, the Dos Pueblos High School Mock Trial team defended its county title by defeating San Marcos High 2-0 in the 2014 Santa Barbara County Mock Trial Championship on Saturday at the Santa Barbara County Courthouse.

It was the sixth consecutive county championship for the Chargers, who advance to the California state championship tournament March 21 in San Jose. In 2011, the Chargers and Royals tied for the county title and were declared co-champions.

The county championship continues an impressive run for Dos Pueblos, which also finished fourth at the Empire World Invitational tournament last October in New York City.

“I am so incredibly proud of our entire team, which is really more of a family at this point,” captain and defense pretrial attorney Delia Bullock said. “From our freshmen to our seniors, everyone really stepped up to the plate bringing confidence and poise to the courtroom.”

It was standing room only as spectators packed Departments 2 and 4 to see the two perennial finalists square off for the seventh straight year.

This year’s fictional case was the murder trial “People vs. Rae Concha.” In the case, a high school student named Jason Johnson collapsed and died during marching band practice with Adderall in his system. A witness came forward to say that Rae Concha is a drug dealer and sold Johnson the Adderall that morning, knowing that he had a severe heart condition. Concha was charged with two counts, possession with intent to sell, and second-degree murder for acting with implied malice and reckless disregard for human life.

Dos Pueblos High School captains Bela Lafferty, Delia Bullock, Madeline Matthys, Sophia Zheng and Camille Wyss show off their first-place trophy. (Uptal Thakrar photo)
Dos Pueblos High School captains Bela Lafferty, Delia Bullock, Madeline Matthys, Sophia Zheng and Camille Wyss show off their first-place trophy. (Uptal Thakrar photo)

The case also included a pretrial argument to exclude evidence after the police officer climbed up onto the defendant’s car to get a better look at alleged evidence. The defense argued that this violated Concha’s Fourth Amendment protection against unreasonable search and seizure.

For defense lead attorney Madeline Matthys, who had been a starting defense attorney for DP for four straight years, this year’s final with San Marcos was her toughest yet.

“Competing against San Marcos could not have been more rewarding,” Matthys said. “The level at which we compete against each other lets both of the teams rise to a level that is unprecedented.”

The Chargers had the unique challenge of facing DP’s junior varsity squad in the morning semifinal round. In the other semifinal, San Marcos defeated Santa Barbara High School. Attorney Steve Amerikaner of Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck presided over the two championship trials.

Bullock and the team now look forward to preparing to make a run at the state tournament. Two years ago, the Chargers advanced through the 36-team tournament to the final round, where they fell short against their rival La Reina High School of Thousand Oaks.

“It is such an honor and thrill to be able to continue on to the state finals, especially when we faced such tough competition from San Marcos,” Bullock said.

Dos Pueblos Mock Trial Team

Prosecution Pretrial Attorney: Will Fredricksen

Prosecution Attorneys: Camille Wyss (captain), Ami Thakrar

Prosecution Witnesses: Kelly Thoits, Jenny Rothman, Alissa Kruidenier, Sophia Zheng (captain), Adrianna Carlos-Arellano

Clerk: Cindy Diaz

Defense Pretrial Attorney: Delia Bullock (captain)

Defense Attorneys: Madeline Matthys (captain), Maggie Miller

Defense Witnesses: Laila Halimi, Nina Downey, Bela Lafferty (captain)

Bailiff: Alexandra Edgar-Gonzalez

Timekeeper: Ashley Villalobos

Attorney Coaches: Joel Block, Scott Campbell, Maureen Grattan

Teacher Coaches: Bill Woodard and Kelly Savio

— Bill Woodard is assistant principal at Dos Pueblos High School and faculty adviser for its Mock Trial team. This story is republished with permission from Dos Pueblos High’s Charger Account.

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