The Newport News Office of the Commonwealth’s Attorney is pleased announce its new high school mock trial program called the STARS (Student Trial Advocates Reaching for Success) Program. STARS was created to provide high school students in the City of Newport News with a unique perspective on the criminal justice system. While the program centers on a mock trial to be held in May of each year, the purpose of the program is to build leadership skills and provide mentorship to young people in our community.

During each program meeting, our participants learn about a different aspect of conducting a trial and work with mentors to prepare their case. Meetings are held twice per month from January to April at the Newport News General District Court. In addition to trial preparation, the students develop professionalism skills and receive valuable mentorship from experienced prosecutors, defense attorneys, and judges in the City of Newport News.

The 2019 STARS Program has participants in grades 9 through 12 from Heritage High School. By implementing this program, our goal is to equip students with the resilience and perseverance needed to overcome everyday challenges and to create more awareness of career opportunities available to students from diverse backgrounds. 

The STARS Mock Trial will take place on May 2, 2019 at 2:30pm in the Newport News Circuit Court with a reception at City Hall immediately to follow.

For more information about this program, please contact Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Shannon Jones at 757-926-7443.