The Chicago-Kent College of Law trial advocacy team of Mariam Chamilova ’19, Dina Lupancu ’18, Carolina Solano ’19, and Ashur Youash ’19 finished in second place at the 2017 Queens County District Attorney’s Mock Trial Competition, held October 14 and 15 at the Queens County Courthouse in Kew Gardens, New York.
Sponsored by the Queens County District Attorney’s Office, the competition gives law students a unique opportunity to try a murder case under New York law before sitting New York Supreme Court justices and Criminal Court judges. The Honorable Joseph A. Zayas of the New York Supreme Court presided over the final round.
Chicago-Kent prevailed over teams from Pace Law School and Temple University Beasley School of Law in the preliminary rounds and the University of Virginia School of Law in the semi-finals. In the final round, Chicago-Kent fell to tournament champions Hofstra School of Law.
This was the first time a team from Chicago-Kent has competed in the Queens County District Attorney’s Mock Trial Competition, and Chicago-Kent was the only law school outside of New York State to finish in the top three. The team was coached by Judge David Erickson, director of Chicago-Kent’s Trial Advocacy Program; Judge Demetrios Kottaras ’84; Anthony Lucafo ’06; Alexandra Molesky ’07; and Ana Montelongo ’16.
Chamilova graduated from Ryerson University in Toronto with a bachelor’s degree in biology. Lupancu earned a B.A. in political science and criminal law and justice from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Solano double-majored in tele-broadcasting media management and graphic design at the University of Miami. Youash graduated with a B.S. in industrial and organizational psychology from the University of Houston.
Chicago-Kent’s trial advocacy teams have won numerous individual student honors and regional and national competitions. In the most recent U.S. News & World Report graduate school rankings, Chicago-Kent’s Trial Advocacy Program is ranked fourth in the country.