Press Release


This weekend, March 4-6, 2022, the Queens District Attorney’s Office hosted its 7th Mock Trial Competition, the first under Queens DA Melinda Katz. Due to Covid concerns, 16 law schools from around the country participated virtually in this competition and tried a murder case under New York State law.  Supreme Court and Criminal Court judges presided over the trials, senior prosecutors and members of the defense bar served as evaluators.

District Attorney Katz said, “In person or not, the mock trial is crucial to the training of the next generation of attorneys, enabling them to sharpen their courtroom skills and hone their experience and intellect in lively competition.”

DA Katz announced that the New York University School of Law won the competition by defeating 15 other teams from around the country in a series of trial meets. The NYU team was comprised of students Elizabeth Bays – who also won Best Advocate in the preliminary rounds – Daniel Cohen, Druv Kumar and Brennan Bartley. Second place winners were participants from the University of Houston Law Center.

Participating Schools:

Boston University School of Law

Brooklyn Law School

University of Buffalo School of Law

University of California Los Angeles School of Law

Chicago-Kent College of Law

Emory University School of Law

Fordham University School of Law

University of Houston Law Center

Mercer Law School

New York Law School

New York University School of Law

Pace University, Elisabeth Haub School of Law

Quinnipiac University School of Law

St. John’s University School of Law

University of Texas School of Law

Hofstra University, Maurice A. Deane School of Law

During this mock trial tournament, each team, which was made up of second- and third-year law students, was required to study a fact pattern based loosely on an actual homicide case tried in Queens County. The competition, which began on Friday evening March 4 and proceeded throughout the weekend, consisted of two preliminary rounds, quarterfinals, semi-finals and a final round. Sixteen judges from Queens, Brooklyn and Nassau volunteered to participate in the competition, along with seasoned prosecutors and defense attorneys who served as evaluators and bailiffs. After each round, feedback was provided to the teams from the evaluators, who scored the advocates.

Sponsored by the Queens District Attorney’s Office, the mock trial competition was supervised by Executive Assistant District Attorney for Trials Pishoy Yacoub with the assistance of Assistant District Attorneys Brian Hughes, Deputy Bureau Chief of the Special Victims Bureau; Laura Dorfman, Director of Legal Training; Mary Kate Quinn, Assistant Bureau Chief of the Domestic Violence Bureau; Senior ADAs Courtney Charles and Kirk Sendlein, of the Homicide Bureau, and Maria Barlis, Paralegal.