This past weekend, two teams of Harvard Law School students won first place and second place at the Northeastern Regional Thurgood Marshall Trial Advocacy Competition. The prestigious competition was held in Syracuse, New York between Thursday, January 28 and Saturday, January 30. This is Harvard’s second consecutive year winning first place at the competition.
Twenty trial advocacy teams from across the Northeastern Region participated in the competition. The two Harvard BLSA teams advanced undefeated to the final round to compete, Harvard versus Harvard, for the championship title. The first place team consisted of Ieshaah Murphy ’12, Julian Thompson ’10, Nneka Ukpai ’11, and Dominique Winters ‘10. The second place team consisted of Charles E. Redmond II ’11, Anthony Hendricks ’12, Etienne Toussaint ’12, and Allison Reid ‘12. In addition to the overall win, Ms. Reid secured a perfect score to win Best Advocate for the regional competition.
The teams owe a debt of gratitude to its esteemed coaches, CJI Deputy Director J. Soffiyah Elijah and CJI Clinical Instructor Dehlia Umunna. Without their dedication, patience, and hard work, this victory would not have been possible. The team also sends a special thank you to Professor Ronald Sullivan for aiding both teams tremendously in their preparation for motions arguments.
The fact pattern involved charges of theft, theft of trade secrets, and breach of computer security against an industrial engineer. Ms. Murphy, Mr. Thompson, Mr. Redmond, and Mr. Hendricks represented the prosecution; Ms. Ukpai, Ms. Winters, Mr. Toussaint, and Ms. Reid represented the defense. The team members met weekdays and weekends for countless hours to prepare for the competition.
Both Harvard BLSA trial teams will be advancing to the National BLSA Trial Advocacy Competition. The competition will be held on March 11, 2010 in Boston, Massachusetts where the top three teams from each of the six regions will compete for the national title. The two teams look forward to more victories in the near future.