Mississippi Valley State University competed in the University of West Florida - Argo Invitational Mock Trial Tournament sponsored by Stetson College of Law in Pensacola, Fla. The team continued its strong tradition by winning two individual awards.
Arlinda Carter, a junior Criminal Justice/ Political Science major from Greenville, Miss., won an Outstanding Attorney award. She received a rare perfect score on the ballots and was the top attorney at the competition. Rickyta Mallet, senior Sociology/Political Science major from Greenwood, received honorable mention as a witness. She played accountant Haley Floyd. Other team members for MVSU included Courtney Boyd, Kaitlyn Horton, Lonell Macon, Jeana McGee, Mildred Michael and Justin Robinson.
Mock trial requires students to perform as attorneys and witnesses competing against teams from around the country. The tournaments are sponsored by the American Mock Trial Association (AMTA). Teams consist of 10 members who must compete in four, three hour trials – two on prosecution and two on defense. Team members must learn affidavits, analyze and utilize numerous pieces of evidence. A trial consists of opening statements, direct examinations, cross examinations and closing arguments. Students must be skilled and focused to succeed.
The invitational tournament attracted teams from around the region including Auburn University, The University of Alabama, Kennesaw State University, The University of South Florida, Mississippi University for Women, The University of West Florida, Houston Baptist University, Georgia State University, The University of Louisiana at Monroe, Mercer University and Millsaps College.
The coach for the Mock Trial Team is Dr. Larry W. Chappell, MVSU Pre-Law Advisor, Professor of Political Science and Coordinator of the Political Science Program. Dr. Chappell was assisted by David Fletcher, second year law student at the University of Mississippi, who is an alumnus of MVSU and a former captain of the MVSU Mock Trial Team.