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FOURTH GRADERS LEARN TO TRY A CASE 5/23/16  05/23/16 11:20:43 AM Printer Friendly VersionPrinter Friendly Version

– Photos by Lorraine Boyd
Ninety-five Fire Ridge Elementary fourth graders, accompanied by their five teachers, descended on the Roman L. Hruska Federal Courthouse last Tuesday for an upclose and personal civics lesson at the Omaha Bar Association’s Mock Trial.

FOURTH GRADERS LEARN TO TRY A CASE
Five classes of fourth graders traveled from Elkhorn to downtown Omaha in two crowded school buses to get a firsthand look at the elements of a jury trial. Accompanied by their teachers, they gathered in the Hon. Lyle E. Strom’s federal courtroom to participate in the trial of Rumpelstiltzkin. The mock trial is put on annually by the Omaha Bar Association as part of their observance of Law Day. This year’s mock trial had to happen a little later than usual due to test scheduling conflicts.
 Deputy County Attorney James Masteller and Teri Koller of Cline Williams argued the case of Rumpelstiltzkin with the help of local actors, mostly from The Rose Theater, including: Scott Pace as King Ray; Ashleigh-Dawn Kriegh-Fleming as Queen Malory; Laura Hensley as Sarah Scrubber; and veteran mock trial actor Josh Mullady as the title character.
About 21 jurors crowded into the jury room to deliberate the civil case, arriving at a final vote of either 18-to-2 or 17-to-3 (counting squirming jurors, hands waving, was a challenge) in favor of Rumpelstiltzkin and they voted to award him the total sought: $50,000. A couple of jurors were intent on seeing the documents offered into evidence and one juror wondered why the plaintiff wanted the queen’s baby, but otherwise all seemed pleased with the outcome.                           
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