Future law students ‘knock it out of the park' at mock trial

Law school is a competitive environment for students.

They compete in class. They compete against other schools. They compete to win. On Monday, the Charleston School of Law Trial Advocacy Board hosted a mock murder trial for undergraduate students from the College of Charleston.

But on this night, winning was trumped by education.

“I don’t expect them to know every rule of evidence. I don’t expect them too not be nervous. I just want to see growth and confidence,” said Brian Kiel, a 2017 Charleston Law graduate and coach for the CofC team. “What I expect to see is just growth.

“Selfishly, I want to see us win competitions down the road. But I’ve won one competition out of probably 30 that I’ve been involved in, so you’re not going to win a lot — but you will.”

Kiel is an attorney for the Carr Legal Group in Beaufort, South Carolina and serves as an adjunct professor at CofC. 

The College of Charleston and Charleston School of Law has partnered to encourage undergraduate students interested in law as a profession by placing them in a mock courtroom experience.

TAB president David Estes mentored the students early in the process. “Their hard work speaks volumes to when they do get to the law school level and are competing on the team,” he said. “I remember showing up for their first day of practice and you could see how well they prepared and developed confidence.”

Photo Gallery: Mock Trial

“These students knocked it out of the park,” said Judge Kristi Harrington. “They all had a wonderful grasp of the facts. Their confidence and professionalism were unparalleled.”

“Community and networking are a huge piece of the puzzle,” said Kiel. “They’re starting to build the resume now. I tell them, start prepping for the bar now.”

Seven CofC students combined to compete in the trial: Charleston Smith, Kala Philpot, Regan Hinson and Lucy Tyrteos for the prosecution and Katherine Vidt, Brooke McAbe and Natalie Juckett for the defense. Hinson and Vidt won “Best Advocate” awards and Kye Allen and Catie Willim were honored as “Best Witness” for the two sides.

The Charleston School of Law Trial Advocacy Board prepares students to become ethical, experienced, and zealous lawyer-advocates. Participation is founded upon a student’s commitment to the pursuit of excellence in advocacy and to ethically represent the Charleston School of Law through dedication and compliance with each team’s rigorous and demanding practice schedule, when representing the Charleston School of Law in trial advocacy competitions throughout the nation.


The Charleston School of Law is an ABA-accredited law school nationally recognized for its student-centric culture. Our faculty and staff are committed to preparing you for success both in the classroom and in the legal profession.

  • The Princeton Review ranks Charleston School of Law professors second in the country for faculty accessibility (2021)
  • Charleston School of Law faculty ranked among the top of The Princeton Review’s list of Best Professors in the nation (2016-2018)
  • Experiential Learning: Charleston School of Law students have access to more than 150 externship sites, creating opportunities for experiential learning in the legal field.
  • Community Service: Charleston School of Law students have performed more than 241,000 community service hours (2004-current).
  • Students have won the National Tax Moot Court Championship for seven consecutive years (2012-2018)

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