This morning our Year 12 A Level Law students had the chance to put their legal skills to the test when Mrs Elphick held a moot trial for each class. This is the scenario our court faced:
The defendant, Ms Alison Fenchurch, has been charged with the murder of Albert Beaker, her long-term landlord. It is alleged that on 14th June 2022, having argued with the victim she pushed him towards an open window through which he fell and landed on the pavement outside. Mr Beaker broke both his legs and his right arm. An ambulance was called and Mr Beaker was rushed to hospital where he was seen by Dr Goodbody. Dr Goodbody failed to notice that his patient had also ruptured a lung and Mr Beaker died from internal bleeding the following day.
In our moot trials the prosecution spoke first, presenting a case for murder. This was then followed by one defence team who argued that the sentence should be reduced to voluntary manslaughter with the defence of diminished responsibility. A second team then argued for voluntary manslaughter with the defence of loss of control.
All of the barristers performed excellently and there were some very compelling arguments with various examples of case law being cited throughout. And the outcome? Well, in the first trial the jury found the defendant not guilty or murder, but guilty of voluntary manslaughter under the defence of diminished responsibility. In the second trial, some last-minute evidence was produced which resulted in the jury giving a verdict of not guilty!
This was an excellent opportunity for the students to apply their legal knowledge to a practical scenario, especially ahead of their trip next week to Norwich Crown Court where they will be sitting in on a real trial.
Click on any of the images below to enlarge them.