The Greater Waco Christian Home Educators mock trial team won the Region 12 Texas High School Mock Trial Competition, sponsored by the McLennan County Young Lawyers Association and held at the Baylor Law School Jan. 31-Feb. 2.

Seven local high schools competed in the regional contest: Greater Waco Christian Home Educators, Lampasas High, Live Oak Classical, McGregor High, Reicher Catholic , Vanguard College Preparatory and Waco High.

Forty attorneys, law students and collegiate mock trial members served as judges during the weekend. Each team competed in three preliminary rounds. Four teams advanced to the semifinal round, and two teams — Greater Waco Christian Home Educators and Live Oak Classical — advanced to the final round.

The Greater Waco Christian Home Educators team will advance to the state competition, which will be held in Dallas during the first weekend of March.

Additionally, this year’s competition included a courtroom artist competition for the first time. Artwork created during rounds was judged by a local artist, a local art teacher and her students. Jesus Cortes-Ortuno of McGregor High School won the courtroom artist competition and will advance to the state contest in that category.

Jackson Kelly of Vanguard College Preparatory was recognized as the best witness in the preliminary rounds. Elise Colón of Live Oak Classical and Cade Zacharias of McGregor High won awards for being the best advocates in the preliminary rounds.

Regional co-chairs were Gavin Lane of the Zimmerman Law Firm and Jenny Branson of Baylor Law.

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