Cases Needed For DCDLA’s Mock Trial Program!

DCDLA Members,

The DCDLA board has approved $1,000 to go toward each of 4 quarterly mock trials for calendar year 2017. Since each mock trial will likely have 15 to 30 participants, that money will probably cover lunch plus at least $25 for each participant. That’s not really enough, but it’s a start.  The DCDLA board may approve larger funding if the case is deemed appropriate.  See me at the courthouse or send me an email if you have a case that you think is big enough and / or complicated enough to justify the expense and extra attention of a full day’s mock trial.

The Mock Trial program is a very significant DCDLA member benefit! On the right case, it can be a real game-changer!

For this program, if possible, I would like retained clients and defense attorneys to come up with at least another $1,500 to fully fund the mock trial. It takes money to get people to volunteer one of their Saturdays, and $25 plus lunch isn’t always enough. With total funding of $2,500 per case we could offer each participating juror at least $50, plus lunch, and each participating lawyer at least $150, plus lunch. If it is an indigent case, we can present that to the DCDLA board to see if we can get additional funding. We’d like to do at least one indigent mock trial a year, possibly two if the circumstances justify it.

Our next mock trial is tentatively scheduled for Saturday, July 22nd. Please mark that date on your calendars and plan to attend. Generally we go from 10 am to 6 pm. If you can only commit half a day to participate, try to make it from 2 pm until 6. That’s when jury deliberations and the jury debriefing occurs, which is the most informative part of the process.

There are no fixed rules as to what case will be chosen, but some considerations will include:
1) Are there novel issues involved
2) Is the case retained, appointed, or PD assignment
3) what level of crime is it (we’re not likely to waste this much time and energy on a misdemeanor, SJF, or an F3).

Don’t be afraid of submitting your case for consideration! We don’t have any other cases for consideration at this point! Almost any serious case is likely to be approved!

As Mr. Duplantis posted shortly after we did a mock trial on his case, doing a full mock trial is an extremely effective tool for sharpening your skills and analyzing a case that has some unique issues. If you are like me, I’m sure that you occasionally ask your family and friends about unusual fact patterns to see what non-lawyers might think about a case. That can certainly help you understand the issues and prepare the case, but is no substitute for the full mock trial experience. I have done three full mock trials on my own in the past, and each has proven to be a terrific asset in preparing and presenting my case.


John Gioffredi
(214) 207-7782 cell