Feature Story

Moot Court 2019

December 4, 2019 – by Ohio Wesleyan University

Cleveland moot court regional tournament participants: (from left) Audrey Homlar ’21, Mahnoor Ansari ’20, Alexis Thomas ’20, Keionna Badie ’20, Anne Miner ’20, Daniela Black ’20, Lauren Mangold ’20, Alexis Henson ’21, and adviser Michael Esler. (Photo courtesy of Michael Esler)

Three Ohio Wesleyan Students Earn Honors in Regional Competition

Six teams of Ohio Wesleyan University students participated in regional competition this fall as part of the American Collegiate Moot Court Association’s annual tournament. Three students earned individual orator awards for their courtroom skills.

In all, 12 OWU students participated Nov. 15-16 in two regional events held simultaneously at the Cleveland-Marshall College of Law and the College of Wooster. Senior Lauren Mangold placed seventh among the individual orators in Cleveland, while seniors Austin Moore and Addie Mannino placed 17th and 19th, respectively, in Wooster.

“This was a veteran team,” said coach Michael Esler, Ph.D., professor of politics and government. “Eight members of the team competed last year. They knew what was required to succeed and required little guidance in getting prepared. The first-years also were easy to prepare and performed at a high level.”

The annual moot court tournament involves students playing the role of attorneys arguing a case before panels of lawyers and judges, said Esler, who also serves as OWU’s pre-law advisor.

This year’s case involved whether tracking a criminal suspect through his cellphone without a warrant violated the Fourth Amendment right against unreasonable searches and seizures and whether admitting a child’s statement at trial without the opportunity to cross examine the child violated the Confrontation Clause of the Sixth Amendment.

“This year’s team was very bright,” Esler said. “They were quick to learn the cases and develop their arguments.”

The teams participating in Cleveland were Mangold and senior Anne Miner, juniors Alexis Henson and Audrey Homlar, seniors Daniela Black and Mahnoor Ansari, and seniors Keionna Badie and Alexis Thomas. The Miner/Mangold and Henson/Homlar teams finished in the Top 16, Esler said, with the Miner/Mangold team narrowly missing advancing to the Top 8.

Wooster moot court regional tournament participants: (from left) Austin Moore ’20, Addie Mannino ’20, Paige Ross ’21, and Chase Dusek ’21. (Photo courtesy of Michael Esler)

In Wooster, the participating teams were Moore and junior Paige Ross, and Mannino and sophomre Chase Dusek. The Ross/Moore team placed in the Top 16.

Each year, the American Collegiate Moot Court Association Tournament holds regional competitions throughout the United States and Canada. This year, more than 350 teams competed.

In addition to the recent regionals, the OWU Moot Court team competed in preliminary invitational tournaments at the Ohio Northern College of Law and in the OWU Invitational, which drew 30 teams from nine colleges spanning the nation from California to New York.

Students interested in joining the moot court team should contact Esler at mvesler@owu.edu.