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Teen Court Program

About Teen Court

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Teen Court

Teen Court is an exciting program that allows the youth of Lassen County to explore the Judicial System by participating in live mock trials with professional mentor guidance. Each Teen Court meeting focuses on learning about different roles in the Justice System, and how they function in a legal setting. Mentors that serve careers in the Justice System teach teens and give them hands on learning experience. Teens enjoy responsibility and accountability by committing to attend meetings, and by participating in meeting activities while learning and having fun.

Club Advisor: Commissioner Witry

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Commissioner Witry in her robe

Commissioner Witry is the judicial officer who mentors and advises the Teen Court program. She has been an attorney since 2000 with a wide array of professional experiences from being Deputy District Attorney, Deputy County Counsel, to owning her own law office. She currently presides over various calendars from Child Support, Unlawful Detainers, Criminal matters, Family Law, and Settlement Conferences to Traffic Court.

She believes the students should be pushed out of their comfort zone often having them give impromptu arguments to hone their debating skills. Since the meetings are held at 5:30 pm, the Commissioner and the Teen Court Staff have worked hard to secure donations to provide dinner at every meeting. Thank you to our sponsors! Without you, we could not have achieved this mission. 

Teen Court Program Announcements

Three components to the Teen Court Program:

  1. Exploring the Courtroom and Learning How the Different Roles Function in the Legal System
  2. The Court in Action
  3. Career Presentations and Guest Speakers

Exploring the Courtroom and Learning How the Different Roles Function in the Legal System

The Teen Court members will start by learning the features of the courtroom, such as the bench, the well, the jury box, etc. Each meeting, the staff will introduce different legal terms, their definition, and how they are used in the courtroom. The students will learn about the different roles in the courtroom and how they function in the overall legal system.

These roles include:  

  • Judge,
  • Commissioner,
  • Clerk,
  • Reporter,
  • Bailiff,
  • District Attorney,
  • Attorneys (Defense and Prosecution), and
  • many more!

The Court in Action

One of the best aspects of Teen Court is the hands-on learning opportunities. Members will be asked to take up a particular role and act accordingly. These roleplay activities will occur both in the actual courtroom and the club meeting room and will simulate portions of the legal system.

The Court in Action activities allow the students to hone their skills by participating in any of the following:

  • Creating and Providing Oral Arguments (Opening and Closing Statements),
  • Participating in Cross Examination,
  • Providing Witness Testimony,
  • Secure the Courtroom as the Bailiff,
  • Selecting a Jury (Voir Dire), and
  • many more!

Career Presentations and Guest Speakers

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Sheriff Presenting to the Class

Pictured above is Sheriff Dean Growdon Presenting to the Teen Court Members

Part of the Teen Court Program is providing the students with different career presentations and guest speakers. We believe it is important to know what potential career opportunities are available in the community.

Here are some of the Career Presentation and Guest Speakers who have visited the club:

  • Sheriff
  • Chief of Police
  • District Attorney
  • Chief of Probation
  • Sheriff’s Deputies and Hank
  • California Highway Patrol

Thank you to all our guest speakers and presenters!

Frequently Asked Question (FAQ)

  • The program accepts students from all over Lassen County
  • Students must be in 8th-12th grade (limited exceptions can be made on a case by case basis)
  • Members are required to attend the meetings in person at the Hall of Justice

The meetings are 5:30 to 7:30 pm on the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of every month (see the Teen Court Flyer under announcements for this year's schedule).

Please Note: There will be no meetings over the summer break (June - September). 

All Teen Court meetings will be held at the Hall of Justice unless otherwise specified at the club meeting. 

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