Phillip Calhoun, left, and Aaron Mebrahtu showed off their legal and verbal skills while winning the Assistance League of Charlotte’s Mecklenburg County Teen Court mock trial competition.
Phillip won Best Prosecuting Attorney; Aaron was Best Defense Attorney. Thirteen teen attorneys faced off at the event, which took place before a crowd that included Charlotte attorneys who served as judges.
“Since I have become involved in the teen court program, I have sharpened my critical thinking, problem solving and public speaking skills,” said Phillip, who is home-schooled. “As well, I have learned about being concise in my presentations. How the material is presented is often more important than what is presented. If I cannot present in a concise and captivating manner, my material could be easily disregarded.”
Aaron, a senior at Ardrey Kell High, said the program – which offers youthful offenders a second chance if they admit their guilt and agree to be tried by a jury of teens in a court setting – “has been such an amazing experience. I wouldn't trade it for anything. All the attorneys and jurors are passionate and committed to their jobs, and their commitment is only exceeded by the volunteers who do everything they can to make it an enjoyable and worthwhile journey. It's been a blessing to be a part of it.”