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Students to Argue 1st Amendment Issues to Judges in State Moot Court Competition

COLUMBUS (April 4, 2024) - The Ohio Center for Law-Related Education (OCLRE) will host its annual high school Moot Court State Competition at the Thomas J. Moyer Ohio Judicial Center in Columbus on Friday, April 12. Students will take on the role of appellate attorneys and argue both sides of an original case. 


Students representing the following schools from across the state will participate: Danville High School (Knox County), Kings High School (Warren County), Mason High School (Warren County), St. Ignatius High School (Cuyahoga County), Talawanda High School (Butler County), Upper Arlington High School (Franklin County), West Clermont High School (Clermont County) and Zanesville High School (Muskingum County). 


Each year, OCLRE volunteers create a new case based on issues of constitutional law. This year, students meet Julie Jenkins, an enterprising young reporter with ambitious plans to report on the primary race for an upcoming gubernatorial election in the State of Buckeye. Suspecting that one of the candidates was less than forthcoming about some of the numbers they were proposing for a sustainability tax, she took a volunteer position with the campaign. During her time with the campaign team, she overheard a phone conversation that confirmed her suspicions.  


After breaking the story, she was visited by police officers investigating a complaint of campaign infiltration, a criminal offense in the Buckeye Revised Code. Students in the competition will advocate on behalf of both Ms. Jenkins and The State of Buckeye to determine whether Julie’s actions were indeed a violation of the statute and whether the statute runs afoul of the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. 


Moot Court teams compete in legal brief-writing and oral argument rounds to persuade a simulated Supreme Court on how the case should be decided. The championship round of the competition will be broadcast on The Ohio Channel’s website. 


Justice Pat Fischer of the Supreme Court of Ohio will preside over the championship round of competition. Fellow panelists include Mike Hendershot, Esq. Deputy Solicitor General for the State of Ohio in the Office of the Ohio Attorney General, Hannah Botkin-Doty, Esq., Hannah’s Legal Help, Tiffany Carwile, Esq., Arnold & Clifford; and Ben Tracy, Esq., Judicial Attorney, Supreme Court of Ohio. 


The Ohio Center for Law-Related Education is a non-profit, nonpartisan organization whose mission is to improve society by developing citizens empowered with an understanding of our democratic system. OCLRE is sponsored by the Supreme Court of Ohio, Ohio Attorney General’s Office, Ohio State Bar Association and the American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio Foundation.  The Moot Court program is funded by a grant from the Ohio State Bar Foundation. For more information, visit



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