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Episode

10

10. Any Given Sunday

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Air date: 

August 2, 2022

It’s been a grueling season for AJ’s St. Mary’s squad. Spirits are low. Exhaustion has creeped in. The Regional Competition is around the corner – and the case packet has just dropped. If they win in Houston, they advance to Nationals. Lose, and they go home. And standing in their way is perennial nemesis, Baylor University. The odds are low, but when the finals are held on a Sunday, anything can happen.

Learn more about the schools, programs and special guests:

St. Mary's University Law School

Texas Young Lawyers Association

University of Houston Law Center

American Board of Trial Advocates

Baylor Law School

South Texas College of Law

University of Texas at Austin School of Law

Follow us on Twitter @ClassActionPod and Instagram @ClassActionPod

Visit our show page for transcripts and more details about the series at ClassActionPod.com

Follow host Katie Phang on Twitter @KatiePhang and Instagram @KatiePhang.


 

TRANSCRIPT

Katie Phang, host:

Class Action is a production of iHeartRadio and Sound Argument.

AJ Bellido de Luna:

Watch your fingers and hands.

Student:

But we don't have Jasmin.

Cole Davila:

We're just going to leave without Jasmin? Where is she?

Student:

Where is she? Is she finding more jackets?

Speaker 5 :

She's printing stuff.

Speaker 3:

Wait.

Andy Vizcarra

Wait, wait. We're missing Jasmin.

Speaker 3:

We're missing Jasmin.

Speaker 4:

Call him.

Speaker 4:

No.

Andy Vizcarra

Hi, where are you?

Speaker 4:

He's cold. He's in shortsies.

Speaker 5 :

Oh, AJ's driving.

AJ Bellido de Luna:

It's 12 o'clock.

Andy Vizcarra

Yeah. He's driving right now.

AJ Bellido de Luna:

You remember the rule? We're leaving at 12:00.

Andy Vizcarra

Okay. She said she's walking out of [inaudible 00:00:37].

AJ Bellido de Luna:

Tell her not to hurry. Tell her. Tell her not to hurry.

Student:

Tell her to run.

Andy Vizcarra:

He said you have to run.

Andy Vizcarra:

Run.

AJ Bellido de Luna:

No, don't do that to her.

Andy Vizcarra:

Run. I'm just kidding. I'm just kidding.

Student:

Oh, there she is.

Student:

There she is, she's in the front Gap outfit.

Andy Vizcarra:

Tell her to run faster.

Student:

She's neon blue Gap outfit.

Andy Vizcarra:

She's in a full on track suit. She was meant for this moment.

AJ Bellido de Luna:

I actually thought she was in the medical school.

Cole Davila:

She is ready for the game coaching.

Jasmin Olguin:

Hello everyone.

AJ Bellido de Luna:

All right. Here we go. On the road again. Can't wait to go back on the road again. Come on everyone, sing along. [singing]

Jason Goss:

All I love is making music with you. [singing]

AJ Bellido de Luna:

That's good. You should go to karaoke.

Andy Vizcarra

I don't know that song.

Andy Vizcarra:

[crosstalk 00:01:26] Oh I didn't do Wordle today. Guys we haven't done Wordle yet. I'm so sorry, what? Jasmin's just mad because she doesn't understand Wordle.

Cole Davila:

I don't have it, so when it comes in it's just like stickers.

Jasmin Olguin:

I Do. It was my first time.

Andy Vizcarra:

So right now I have no idea where we are. I just woke up from a nap, but we're on our way to Houston. And we stopped at a Bucky's, classic, must do in Texas. Apparently they have the best convenient store barbecue sandwiches in the state. But it's just miserable outside. It is gray. I've never seen Texas be gray before, but we are moving and grooving in Houston.

Andy Vizcarra:

Jasmin brought 17 different outfits.

Jasmin Olguin:

It's two jackets.

Andy Vizcarra:

Dude. It was at least four winter coats.

Cole Davila:

You probably brought the entire wardrobe.

Jasmin Olguin:

That leather coat completes the look. What?

Andy Vizcarra

For one night you brought that coat, Jasmin? You're going to be Jack Sparrow on us?

Cole Davila:

I'm watching the news. Chernobyl just fell to the Russians. So that's fun.

Jasmi Olguin:

For real?

Cole Davila:

Yeah. Chernobyl. The site of the nuclear disaster, the Russians just took it. So they're still moving south. So this is the stuff that interests me. Chernobyl, yeah, they took Chernobyl.

Student:

You know the energy in this van needs to be positive. Uplifting. Get rid of my sight.

Cole Davila:

Don't ask me then, because I'm glued to this stuff right now.

GPS:

Use the left two lanes to keep left at I-10 East.

Jasmin Olguin:

Wow, is that a Wendy's?

Andy Vizcarra

How `is Wendy's still in business?

Student:

Their frosties?

Speaker 5 :

Their nuggets.

Cole Davila:

Their nuggets. Their nuggets are amazing.

Student:

Their frosties.

Student:

Yeah.

Cole Davila:

I've never had their...

Speaker 4:

They're good.

Andy Vizcarra:

The little one, you can do one this big.

Student:

Yeah. For like a dollar.

Andy Vizcarra:

Why would you ever get a Frosty when you can just get a blizzard at Dairy Queen?

Katie Phang, host:

After the disappointing loss at the Best of Texas competition.


[audio from Episode 7 “Don’t Mess with Texas”]

Jasmin Olguin:

So we lost that round?

AJ Bellido de Luna:

We lost that round. Two to one. We did.

Katie Phang, host:

The St. Mary's trial team. It's back together. Only this time without Mariella. And they're on route to the highest stakes tournament of the year, the regional bracket of the National Trial Competition. 11 schools start out on Friday, but only two will survive and advance to nationals on Sunday. By that time for everyone else, the season will be over. And while this isn't the first rodeo for St. Mary's, it is the first time they'll be competing live this season.

Courthouse Security Guard:

Welcome to the Harris County civil courthouse.

Judge Christine Weems:

So you can come in here and be comfortable and mingle with people.

Student:

Oh we can go in there too?

Judge Christine Weems:

You should know about this room. Because this public room is where there's always going to be a bottle of water. There's going to be coffee in the morning here. There's going to be lunch as well, so.

Katie Phang, host:

The law students are all dressed up for a swanky happy hour that's on the docket for tonight. The only table available to St. Mary's though, is smacked dab in the center of the room where all of the other teams can check them out.

Cole Davila:

Yeah, no.

Andy Vizcarra:

You have the happy hour.

Cole Davila:

Yeah, I think we just chill here.

Andy Vizcarra:

I am so hungry.

Katie Phang, host:

Judge Christine Weems, the competition host leaves the students to fend for themselves. She pulls all of the coaches into a conference room to sort out the rules and to draw the match ups.

Judge Christine Weems:

So y'all can just come hang out here. I'm going to take the coaches to a different room.

Judge Christine Weems:

So we do a four round prelim just because I hate three round prelims. I'm very bitter. I did... I got... Well, I got on the losing end of a three round prelim in law school like 25 years ago and I still hold a grudge about it.

AJ Bellido de Luna:

She's not bitter.

Katie Phang, host:

Back in the main room. It's awkward. The St. Mary's team tries to act cool.

Cole Davila:

Unique New York.

Student:

It's hard, unique New York, unique in New York.

Cole Davila:

Unique New York.

Student:

Just to help you like enunciate your words before you speak.

AJ Bellido de Luna:

Just like toy boat.

Student:

She does red leather, yellow leather.

Katie Phang, host:

There's a lot of side eye glances, silent judgements, and forced small talk. Except from Cole Davila.

Cole Davila:

If you say you hacked into a nuclear reactor, you could scram the reactor, which shuts down the plant, cutting off power.

Student:

That's not very good for the civilians.

Cole Davila:

Rules like that are easy when everything's going good. And then it goes bad.

Katie Phang, host:

But these are competitors. And they are on high alert for any smack talk from the other schools. Especially from their arch nemesis Baylor University.

Christopher Grant:

My name is Christopher Grant. I am the young Padawan to the Jedi master Kris Ruiz.

Kristopher Ruiz:

Kristopher Ruiz. This is my fourth tournament on behalf of Baylor, I competed in undergrad so I've been repping Baylor for seven years now. It's a great experience. Really enjoy it. Looking forward to the tournament.

Katie Phang, host:

An hour goes by and the coaches, well they're oblivious to what their suffering students are going through.


[Judge Weems and coaches in conference room]

Judge Christine Weems:

Nope, can't do that. 163 can't play 162. Pick a different one. That one I know. 163 versus 235. Can we do that?


Coach:

Yes, Ma’am.


[all teams in larger conference room waiting for the coaches to return]

Andy Vizcarra:

I feel like, what's in consensus is that we are a little bit, just a tiny bit, starving.

Student:

Just a tiny bit starving.

Andy Vizcarra:

You guys left for the coaches' conference. And we thought that was the happy hour. So we were like, bring on the tapas. Nope, no tapas.


Judge Christine Weems:

Great. That's the opening rounds. I'll put all this on the website.


Katie Phang, host:

It's late, it's freezing, and it's raining. The tapas and the fashionable cocktails at the happy hour are going to waste. This whole, "Let's get together and bond with your fellow law student," thing. Well, it's a total bust.


[team gathers in hotel lobby]

Jason Goss:

And the other option is y'all just go back to the hotel now and get pizza.

Student:

I will literally pay for the pizza.

Jason Goss:

I prefer that. Yeah, no, we could do that. I got to go to the happy hour but y'all can go back.

Student:

There was teams that didn't even show up to this.


Katie Phang, host:

This is Episode 10 of Class Action, "Any Given Sunday".


Ashley Hymel:

The excitement level for them is just huge and it just makes all of our hearts grow. And it's why we do this.

Bree Trevino:

It's extremely fast paced. Once you're in the competition...


Katie Phang, host:

Bree Trevino and Ashley Hymel oversee the national competition for the Texas Young Lawyers Association.


Ashley Hymel:

There's not a lot of time to think. Once you're in it, you just have to do what you know that you need to do and move forward. I think the competition setting is important for them to understand how to be good trial lawyers when the stakes are high, when there's the pressure on when there's the stress to it as well.


[teams gathered at courthouse in large conference room]

Jasmin Olguin:

Oh yeah. This morning I woke up at four and was stressing. I couldn't go back to bed. And I was like, oh my gosh, I'm going to pass out. I'm not sleeping enough. And I have to go two rounds. What if that happens? And then Andy woke up finally and I'm like, Andy, she's like, no, no we're switching. And I was like, okay.

Jason Goss:

So my main job is just to make sure all those cats are herded at the beginning. Make sure they're on track.


Katie Phang, host:

Coach Jason Goss comes across like a good old boy, but just below the surface. He's hell bent on a trophy. Jason was the star attorney on the last St Mary's team to make it to nationals, way back in 2008.


Jason Goss:

But now I need y'all to win. I need y'all to have a killer instinct. I need you to go for the throat every time. Because if you don't, this will be the last mock trial that you ever do. When you're [inaudible 00:10:36] everything rides on this weekend. And you got to kill it.

Jason Goss:

South Texas is very good. I mean, they're always very good. St. Mary's always goes against South Texas and Baylor. Always. Every year since I've been here. Every year. And it's always hard and that's good. And if you beat him, you feel really good.

Cole Davila:

Going both ways. Some of the facts start to blur a little bit together, especially since some of the initial stuff and openings and crosses and directs kind of are similar questions. So it would throw me off. So, I saw that I had two ties that are kind of similar in design. So, the gold is defense. I've always been told red is a prosecution color. So...

Andy Vizcarra:

I think blue is a prosecutor because we're the good guys.

Cole Davila:

Well, red is prosecution for me. So, that's how I keep it straight.


[beginning of Round 1 of National Trial Competition Regionals]

Judge:

All right. Calling to order. Cause number 18333, the State of Lone Star versus Timmy Williams. We're on the record. Does the state have any motions?

South Texas competitor:

Yes, your Honor. By way of background, the defendant in today's case, Timmy Williams is being charged with possession of a controlled substance with the intent to deliver. Now, the defendant was found in apartment number 123, along with cocaine, and other associated drug paraphernalia. Now the apartment in question is listed under Tommy Williams. Who's the defendant's brother.

Judge:

Is there a response?

Jasmin Olguin:

Yes, your Honor. We are here today on a possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver that controlled substance being cocaine. A key issue in today's case is who had actual care, custody and control. It will be our defense that Tommy Williams was the one who had actual care, custody and control…

Cole Davila:

That's when officer Perez took the drugs from upstairs, walked them downstairs to a table where there was a scale…

Jasmin Olguin:

So he took the cocaine from upstairs, brought it downstairs, placed it on this scale and then took the photograph. It would be misleading the jury, as it was manipulated and staged for this photograph to be taken…

Katie Phang, host:

After months on Zoom, Jasmin finally has the opportunity to take advantage of the dynamics of a real courtroom.

Jasmin Olguin:

May I approach the witness?

Judge:

You may.

Katie Phang, host:

Cole, who is normally pretty shy, can finally let loose.

Cole Davila:

We want to talk about that scale. Do you see that scale there?

Witness:

Yes.

Cole Davila:

You didn't check that scale for fingerprints, did you?

Witness:

No.

Cole Davila:

You didn't check that scale for cocaine residue.

Katie Phang, host:

And of course Jasmin can have her hair just right. Her nails flawless. As she likes to say. Everyone is making eye contact with the witness, the judge and the other team. It's a revelation.

Jasmin Olguin:

It was the perfect example of delivery. Because it was manipulated.

Katie Phang, host:

In many ways, the defense case, it's juicier. They can argue that investigators rushed to judgment that they staged the evidence. They didn't even read Timmy Williams his Miranda Rights.

Cole Davila:

You didn't talk to anybody that day did you?

Witness:

No, I did not.

Cole Davila:

You didn't talk to anyone there any other time, did you?

Witness:

No.

Cole Davila:

Prosecution's supposed to keep us safe whereas the defense is supposed to keep the government in check. You have to keep the bad cops in check. And you have to hammer them hard.

Cole Davila:

You didn't talk to the landlord of that apartment complex. You never tried to examine a lease agreement. You never tried to verify who actually owned apartment 123. Did you?

Cole Davila:

So there's this weird dynamic. It sounds bad making an example because you don't want to go too far, but you also don't want to, convict, in the court of public opinion, a cop who did nothing wrong, but you might have to imply that they did something wrong in order to serve your client.

Jasmin Olguin:

You can either choose to do what is right or what is easy. And the state has chosen to do what is easy. Members of the jury we are asking you to do what is right. When you see that verdict form, to find Mr. Williams, not guilty.

Judge:

Thank you counselors. At this point, we're going to submit the matter to the jury. And so we are in recess until that point off the record. All right.


[in recess, team gathers in hallway]

Jason Goss:

So I mean, I feel good about them. We'll just kind of see, it's going to be interesting because if they do well in these first two rounds, they're going to be going against the best then the third and fourth, and everybody's going to be knocking each other down. So, that's a good thing.

Katie Phang, host:

It's a surprisingly good first day for the St. Mary's team. They win this round as well as the next. With Andy wearing her prosecutor's hat ripping apart the key witness for the defense.

Andy Vizcarra:

Mr. Williams, according to you, the scale in this photo isn't yours.

Timmy Williams:

It is not.

Andy Vizcarra:

According to you, the straws aren't yours.

Timmy Williams:

No.

Andy Vizcarra:

According to you, the little baggies aren't yours.

Timmy Williams:

No.

Andy Vizcarra:

And according to you, the cocaine isn't yours.

Timmy Williams:

Nope.

Andy Vizcarra:

And according to you, you're Tommy Williams, right?

Timmy Williams:

No, according to me, I'm Timmy Williams.

Andy Vizcarra:

But that's not what you told the police on the day that you were arrested.

Timmy Williams:

That's accurate.

Andy Vizcarra:

No further questions.

[inside Judge Christine Weems’ office]

Judge Christine Weems:

I'm still waiting to hear from this round, and this round to find out who the presiding judge is, but I know Bill Ford's presiding judge because I saw him on the bench in that one.

AJ Bellido de Luna:

Okay.

Katie Phang, host:

It's the second day of the regional tournament and head coach AJ Bellido de Luna is volunteering to help Judge Weems with the scoring system. It's a complex job and something he's done throughout his career in the trial advocacy world. AJ maintains his neutrality, but he can't help, but be excited at how well his team is doing.

AJ Bellido de Luna:

Our St. Mary's 2 team, of team 163, they're the ones that just swept that last round. They're facing the Baylor team, which happens to be in first place. We have a tough matchup, but this is where we're supposed to be. You want to be in the arena with the big boys, right? With the big teams, that's, where you want to be. You want to be playing against the best players. And the fact that they came out of the basement, says a lot more about their character.

Andy Vizcarra:

I really, really just hope that we break this fake curse that everyone is talking... We just haven't advanced in so long. I really just want to be the team that does it. It's time. We've waited long enough. And we know that we got it. So we just got to do it.

Katie Phang, host:

For Andy, Jasmin, and Cole, their entire season is on the line.

Cole Davila:

Your Honor, those in counsel. Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, may I please the court. Two wrongs don't make a right, and three lies don't make a truth. At the end of this trial, my co-counsel is going to come before you. Ms. Andy Vizcarra. And she's going to go through all of the evidence that you saw today. And you're going to see the wrongs of the defendant and the lies of the defendant, don't make it true. And she's going to show you how we have met our burden of proof. And she will ask you to find the defendant. Timmy Williams, guilty.

Katie Phang, host:

Baylor is not fooling around. They bring in their A team.

Christopher Grant:

May I please the court? My name is Christopher Grant, and I'm proud to be here representing Timmy Williams. Now, just a moment ago, the state came before you and they spent most of their time talking about the fact that Timmy Williams... Well, they're going to tell you over, and over, and over, and over again that he's a liar, he's a liar, you shouldn't trust him.

Cole Davila:

Objection, your Honor. I apologize. But this is getting into significant argumentative territory.

Judge:

Sustained.

Cole Davila:

In general, I am a fairly quiet person, I keep to myself and I don't confront people. Here, to me, it makes sense for me to be a little more snippy and a little more aggressive. You give me an assignment I do it.

Katie Phang, host:

Maybe it's because it's Baylor, or maybe it's the pressure or the threat of elimination, but it's obvious these lawyers really don't like each other. The mascot for Baylor is the bear. For St. Mary's. It's the rattlesnake.

Andy Vizcarra:

Mr. Williams, how many times would you say that you lied to law enforcement on the day that you were arrested? Mr. Williams, you told the law enforcement that day that you were talking about doing that... You were also throwing your brother under the bus.

Christopher Grant:

So the truth. Throughout the entire course of your investigation, you found no evidence, Timmy Williams ever received any payment in exchange for drugs.

Witness:

I found no money, correct.

Christopher Grant:

You found no evidence, Timmy Williams communicated with anyone whatsoever to buy or sell any drugs...

Daniela Vakulchik:

...You moved two pieces of key evidence with your bare hands. So officer Perez, you staged this photograph.

Officer Perez:

I disagree with that. In staging...

Andy Vizcarra:

Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, we learned today that when Timmy Williams' back is against the wall. What he does is lie. Today you have the power to deliver a verdict based on the truth. I ask that you find the defendant guilty today.

Daniela Vakulchik:

May it please the court? It is a scary society for us to live in, to think that you can visit somebody's house, and because that somebody else has something incriminating upstairs, you could be found guilty.

Andy Vizcarra:

He had nothing to hide. That's what they told you. If he had nothing to hide, why lie? If you had nothing to hide, why would you ask, "How do I get out of these charges?" Why not say, wait, whoa, this has gone too far. I'm not Tommy. I'm Timmy. Those aren't my drugs.

Daniela Vakulchik:

Objection, your Honor.

Andy Vizcarra:

Isn't my...

Daniela Vakulchik:

I'm sorry to interrupt. I asked that it be stricken.

Judge:

Let's move along.

Andy Vizcarra:

Yes your Honor. If he had nothing to hide, why lie?


Judge 1:

Andy, your style is great. I knew from your face, you didn't like my original ruling on the conversation.

Andy Vizcarra:

Oh no.

Judge 1:

And it's fine and it's okay to be disappointed, right? It's fine. But I like the way you came back and you came back in a very respectful way and you had new evidence...

Judge 2:

Andy. Gosh, you're such a good advocate. Cole also, man, y'all both of you guys as a team, super professional. Christopher, you are an excellent storyteller. Daniela you're a really good listener, but maybe don't get too aggressive right off the bat.


Judge Christine Weems:

So the part that you care about, these are the teams that are advancing. In the semifinals for region 10, in the 333rd on prosecution will be team 350 Baylor 2 versus team 163 St. Mary. [crowd cheers and applause] And then the last team in the semifinal round will be in the 334th team, 349 Baylor one versus team 162 St. Mary. [crowd cheers and applause] For those y'all who broke, I'm sure y'all have work to do. For the rest of you who didn't break, we thank you so much for coming.

[inside restaurant as the team gathers for dinner]

St. Mary’s team chatter:

She said what? No, I'm not leaving. No, no.

Jason Goss:

No. I'm proud of all you. I mean, I've told you all y'all are going to be here.

St. Mary’s team chatter:

We made it.

Jason Goss:

We made it.

St. Mary’s team chatter:

We don't take L's we give them.

St. Mary’s team chatter:

We finally did it.

St. Mary’s team chatter:

We broke. We made it to the next round. We're going the semifinals and it's unreal. We're so excited. So happy.

AJ Bellido de Luna:

We can't remember when's the last time St. Mary's advanced two teams in this competition to the next round, in a live competition. But the last time that we had two teams advance, especially the gauntlet that we went through, is pretty amazing. So, hopefully we're not done.

Today when they got the van, they weren't going lose. They did exactly what they needed to do against superb teams. So, I'm ecstatic right now. But it's not good enough is it. It's been since 2008 since we made it to the nationals. We need them. We need them to do it. So, I am cautiously optimistic.


Jason Goss:

Here's the thing. Tomorrow, when you go in, now, it's for real. You lay it all out there because the one thing you don't want to go back and say, "I could have done more, and I didn't because I was tired."

AJ Bellido de Luna:

I'm worried about them waking up tomorrow and saying, "Oh my God, we're facing Baylor." Baylor's the best trial advocacy program in the country. They really are. Facing them is a big hurdle. We can't get to the national championship without getting through them. So, it's going to be hard. It's going to be a hard day. They can do their best and it's still not win.

Student:

Don't accept the premise. Whoo!

AJ Bellido de Luna:

I'm so happy.

AJ Bellido de Luna:

So we're going back to the hotel.

Katie Phang, host:

The team piles into the van and heads back to the hotel. Andy calls a team meeting in her room. Jasmin's already in her PJ's and fuzzy slippers.

Jasmin Olguin:

Wait, can I say the first thing?

Andy Vizcarra:

Oh yeah, sure. Lead the meeting cap.

Jasmin Olguin:

What can we do to better the round we had this morning? Because it was a good round, but we need to be great.

Andy Vizcarra:

Jasmin.

Jasmin Olguin:

Yeah.

Jasmin Olguin:

Like today I was better at that.

Andy Vizcarra:

Yeah, you were great. And you were on it. Next level of that is, yeah, Baylor's tomorrow. I don't think we should get really psyched out about it because...

Jasmin Olguin:

I'm not.

Andy Vizcarra:

...We did it today. And we did it today.

Jasmin Olguin:

Cole, you lead pretrial. If you don't mind...

Cole Davila:

I'll do it.

Jasmin Olguin:

I'm sorry.

Cole Davila:

That's fine.

Andy Vizcarra:

You have... No! You have to assert... You're the anchor. You have to assert your dominance from the beginning. It's your time. It's your clock. It's your room. It's your trial. It's your case.

Cole Davila:

Okay.

Andy Vizcarra:

Like tomorrow it's Baylor. So read the room, read the witness, read the judge, and apply your cross accordingly. But even if it has to be soft cross, like...

Jasmin Olguin:

We're actually...

Andy Vizcarra:

Your job is done by noon. Jasmin. Think about that after noon. You're...

Jasmin Olguin:

I just need to get it to you. And I'm good. Once we get it there...

Andy Vizcarra:

But most likely they're going to switch it to cross. There's no way they gave St. Mary's two defenses and the semi-final round.

Cole Davila:

That'd be awesome.

Andy Vizcarra:

And they're not going to flip us [inaudible 00:27:04].

Andy Vizcarra:

It's weird.

Jasmin Olguin:

Maybe it's because of my issues, I don't feel like...

Andy Vizcarra:

Oh Jesus.

Jasmin Olguin:

You scream to everybody "Love me." I scream, "Don't". I don't want you to love me people. That's what it is.

Cole Davila:

There's some deepness there.

Jasmin Olguin:

All right. I appreciate it. What do you think, Cole? How are you feeling?

Andy Vizcarra:

Yeah. Cole, you actually have done the most work ever.

Jasmin Olguin:

Like you've been a straight up gangster "G" every round.

Cole Davila:

Just got to do it again tomorrow.

Andy Vizcarra:

Yeah!

Jasmin Olguin:

You're the glue...

Andy Vizcarra:

He said "gangster's my middle name!"

Jasmin Olguin:

You are the glue to this team.

Andy Vizcarra:

You are the glue to this team. Without you Jasmin and I would still be fighting about what to get for dinner.

Jasmin Olguin:

Yeah. Bad.

Jasmin Olguin:

Bad. Like you make us better. Each of us.

Cole Davila:

My dad was in the Marines a few years before I was born. My mom's father, he was in the Air Force. Military was just something I sort of grew up interested in. People watch whatever TV shows, reality shows or whatever, I'd be watching some military documentary or something like that. Just because that's what I found interesting.

Cole Davila:

So my dad, he's all for joining the military, very supportive of it. And my biological father's the same way. He's put me in contact with people that he knows that were former JAG to talk to them and learn more about the program. My mom isn't as thrilled about it. That motherly protection kind of thing. She thought that JAG was a civilian thing where they just work for the military. She didn't realize it was actual military. So if I did JAG, it would be basic training, should be officer kind of get school, after that. And then JAG training.

Cole Davila:

A lot of attorneys, a lot of law students at least, they need to be in charge. Which isn't an inherently bad thing, but if you don't take orders from other people well, then military obviously isn't going to be good for you. Some people can be commanded. Some people can't. Some people can step into a leadership shoe. Some people can't, and it's just the way it is. I think I can. And hopefully the military agrees.

[team gathers in van and drives from the hotel to the courthouse]

Student:

Morning.

Jasmin Olguin:

Andy and I had some good conversations this morning, just about the rounds and us as people, I guess too. So, I feel like we got pretty deep on sometimes. So Andy's advice is don't try to be somebody you're not, basically. I'm not going to get intimidated by case law. I'm not going to get intimidated.

Student:

Amen. Hell yeah. That's it. That's the vibe.

Andy Vizcarra:

[inaudible 00:29:37] today? 9:00 am, win semi. 2:00 pm, win championship.


[inside courthouse, team enters elevator to the large conference room]

Andy Vizcarra:

Don't accept any of the premises that they give you.

Jasmin Olguin:

Tell me more.

Andy Vizcarra:

Huh?

Jasmin Olguin:

Tell me your little three things.

Andy Vizcarra:

The law tries to codify equity. Your Miranda argument is strong. It should not be overcome by anything.

Jasmin Olguin:

It doesn't. Because we...

Andy Vizcarra:

Never accept the premise. Never back down.

Jasmin Olguin:

Can you go to the record with me again? Don't hate me please could you just call me [inaudible 00:30:18].

Andy Vizcarra:

I'm not worried. Just get us to 2:00 pm.

Jasmin Olguin:

Coaches told me the thing about me is I have a... I think he said sweet disposition. I go up there and I'm like sweet and everything, or not sweet, but I don't seem all aggressive, but then when it comes down to it, I can do it. The thing that I love about the law is that the purpose is to obviously keep the community safe, but also to uphold justice and fairness.

But I personally do know attorneys who are like that. They don't care about their clients. Not one bit at all. I want to be a difference. If somebody were to hire me instead of this other attorney, that could actually affect their case. I don't know what my purpose is. We're all finding it out every day, but, I think one of my purposes has got to be to make the world a better place. Has got to be to change lives, because one attorney could really change a life.


[team huddle in hallway before next round]

Andy Vizcarra:

I just want to remind you that we beat that girl in Best in Texas.

Jasmin Olguin:

I know.

Andy Vizcarra:

Okay.

Jason Goss:

So it's the two girls now.

Andy Vizcarra:

Yeah.

Jason Goss:

Okay.

Jason Goss:

Yeah. So, y'all know where to stand. You know where to do, you know all this stuff.

Jason Goss:

This is fun. I mean, it's stressful, but it's fun. I mean all we can prepare you for is to break, because once you're in the break ground, you're always going against a school that's as good as you are.

Jason Goss:

It doesn't matter who the advocates are. You all understand the program, you watched it all yesterday. So y'all went through it all yesterday. So, it's only about those little things that are happening and who your judges are. And so there's so many variables that right now, we're just all hanging on for the ride.

Jason Goss:

And you got to win to break. The whole idea is that the person who is calmest, the team who is most professional, and the most calm, is going to be the one that wins. The one who confidently goes through and does what they're doing is going to be the one that wins.

Jasmin Olguin:

You got it. I got it. Yeah, you're right.

Andy Vizcarra:

You know all of them. It's just style, whatever feels right in that moment. Like we could tell you, "Yeah, maybe just give it the..."

Jasmin Olguin:

That helps me first. [Jasmin pops gum]

Andy Vizcarra:

It's really going to like, yeah. Speak first, strike first, strike hard. Like no mercy. Do not be chewing that gum [inaudible 00:32:48].

Jasmin Olguin:

I'm about to spit it out. I'm getting it all out now.

Andy Vizcarra:

He's like "Oh my god it's going to be crazy."

Cole Davila:

Your Honor [acting like chewing gum making loud noise]

Jasmin Olguin:

Your Honor [acting like chewing gum making loud noise]

[inside courtroom, next round begins]

Judge, Scott West:

So good morning, everybody.

Cole Davila:

Morning your Honor.

Judge, Scott West:

So this is going to be a good case. This is going to be a good opportunity for all of you advocates. I hear great things about you. So my bailiff got fired because of bad attitude. So do we have somebody who can keep time for us?

Katie Phang, host:

Andy. Who's kind of losing it at this point because she's dying to compete, volunteers.

Andy Vizcarra:

I can go ahead and keep time for us.

Judge, Scott West:

Is that all right? So I have a new bailiff finally. The last one only lasted three days. Apparently I'm a tyrant.

Katie Phang, host:

Andy takes a seat in the jury box. It's the perfect spot to keep an eye on her teammates.

Jasmin Olguin:

Eventually you did call the narcotics unit.

Patrol Officer:

I did.

Jasmin Olguin:

Because you had a dream that maybe one day I could move from being a patrol officer to the narcotics unit.

Patrol Officer:

Yes.

Jason Goss:

Jasmin has kind of come into herself. And I think at the beginning, she was very quiet and not sure of herself. And she has improved leaps and bounds. She's way better right now than she's ever been.

Jasmin Olguin:

...be a bad person. Timmy lied because he was a victim of the system. But the state has based their entire case on these lies. If the detective on scene doesn't do their job, who else is supposed to? That's on the detective. That's on the state, to investigate properly. That is not the country that we live in today.


Judge, Scott West:

All four of you, just your movements were good. You anchored, you were repetition. You used each other's themes against each other. All of that was good. So again, congratulations on getting this far. It was very tough to judge. There's got to be a winner and there's got to be a loser. And I can already tell you that there's a difference as to very small percentage as to who won and who lost, but all four of you won. So, congratulations.


[team huddles in hallway]

Andy Vizcarra:

I was trying to smile but I can't be making faces at you with them watching.

Jasmin Olguin:

I wanted to cry, I was like she doesn't like it.

Andy Vizcarra:

No, I just can't be like... I couldn't smile at you.

Jasmin Olguin:

...Disappointed face, and I was like...

Andy Vizcarra:

No, I was trying to help.

Jasmin Olguin:

...On my way to cry.

Andy Vizcarra:

I was trying to be a bailiff. I was like, I can't react to this.

Jasmin Olguin:

Yes.

Maritza Stewart:

What going on right now?

Andy Vizcarra:

How do you feel?

Jasmin Olguin:

I feel like I stumbled in motions and it just...

Andy Vizcarra:

No, you didn't.

Jasmin Olguin:

You sure?

Andy Vizcarra:

Yeah.

Jasmin Olguin:

Okay.

Cole Davila:

I have no idea.

Andy Vizcarra:

I'm going to vomit.

Jasmin Olguin:

Do you have any idea?

Andy Vizcarra:

I'm going to barf.

Andy Vizcarra:

I don't know. I thought presiding was with you the whole time. Even though he was overruling stuff. He got a little gleam in his eyes, especially like when Cole... judges love Cole, especially presiding, just because he has that thing. You believe him. You believe him.

Cole Davila:

I don't know if the judges liked it or not. You know, you can't really tell by just comments alone. Right? Sometimes the judge will crap on your team and just criticize you. And then you found out that they had you winning by 30 points. So you don't, we don't know until we get the ballots back.

Andy Vizcarra:

You killed them with kindness. Exactly. Like we talked about and that's really powerful. And for them, yeah, they were trying to bully us, but the sun came out and that's what I'm working with. Because I did manifest that for today. I did not look at the weather forecast. So, I mean there's a chance. There's a chance. And if there's a chance and we knocked out Baylor, we're going to have a hoot.

Jasmin Olguin:

We did the best you think.

Andy Vizcarra:

Yes.

Jasmin Olguin:

It was a good round.

Andy Vizcarra:

How did you feel?

Jasmin Olguin:

I feel like, well, I'm going to cry again. I feel like maybe I disappointed everybody.

Andy Vizcarra:

No. Why do you think that?

Jasmin Olguin:

Just because emotions. Like I got tongue tied a little bit.

Andy Vizcarra:

No you didn't.

Cole Davila:

You didn't you called the defendant, Tom.

Andy Vizcarra:

They were like, "bah, bah, bah" and you were like...

Cole Davila:

Several times...

Andy Vizcarra:

..."Your Honor, bada, da, da, da, da, da, da, da, da". You were good.

Jasmin Olguin:

Seem like the whole trial?

Andy Vizcarra:

No you didn't seem shaky. You were calm, because the whole entire time you were like, and you smiled, you went up there. You were like, okay, let's talk about... I was like, yeah, we're killing them with logic today. Okay. Okay.

Jasmin Olguin:

That was great.

Andy Vizcarra:

Okay. Okay. Good.

Cole Davila:

Yeah.

Andy Vizcarra:

We're good.

Cole Davila:

Jury's taking days to deliberate.


[all teams gather in large conference room for announcements on break to final rounds]

Jasmin Olguin:

You're like...

Andy Vizcarra:

No, my heart, my heart is in my throat, which is my stomach is in my heart. I don't know. That's how yeah.

Jason Goss:

Everybody get something to eat a little bit. Well, no, I did actually think that like one time.

Jasmin Olguin:

She's here. She's here. She's here.

Judge Christine Weems:

All right, all the judges come up.

Judge Christine Weems:

Yeah, I think so.

Judge 3:

We're here.

Judge Christine Weems:

All right everybody. Some very, very well fought battles. We are super proud of every one of y'all please. It's always hard because every time you advance, somebody's got to go home. And in this instance, obviously four teams have to go home and four are moving on to the finals. These are the teams that are moving on into the finals. And there are two final rounds.

In the 295th on prosecution. It will be team 349, Baylor versus team 346, South Texas College of Law on defense. [crowd cheer and applause] In the 333rd courtroom team 176 Texas will go prosecution against team 163 St. Mary's. [crowd cheer and applause]

Congratulations to all of you. For those of you who do not advance, y'all want a six pack of beer. Seriously. We got tons. He's already like, I already got one. I ain't competing today.

Jason Goss:

So they said, Texas, what did they say, Texas two?

Andy Vizcarra:

I don't remember. I just heard Texas. I blacked out after they said we weren't prosecution.

Jason Goss:

I know.

Jasmin Olguin:

I did too because...

Jason Goss:

Cole. Did they say Texas two or Texas one?

Cole Davila:

I don't remember.

Andy Vizcarra:

It's probably... is it the Texas where the guy won best prosecutor? Probably, because he was Texas.

Jason Goss:

He was South Texas. It was Texas.

Andy Vizcarra:

Is it a coin toss on what side we go.

Jason Goss:

It was defense. It has to do with seatings, the pairings, where we were...

Andy Vizcarra:

Oh okay.

Jason Goss:

It's an automatic flip. So it had nothing to do with us. It had to do with where they were. So...

Cole Davila:

We are going, I think it's UT. I'm not sure how the bracket works, but that's what we're doing now. They're going to prosecution, we're going defense and UT School of Law is like one of the best in the country, overall. I don't care that I beat Baylor I need to beat these guys.

Kristen Cabrera, producer:

I know I was wondering about, yeah. I was like, oh man, you must be like hanging, chomping at the bits.

Andy Vizcarra:

I'm just like, I was so happy that we were advancing that I didn't care. You know? Because advancing is advancing. But yeah, it's hard. You're fighting the feeling of not crying, like that's the super bowl and I got benched and it wasn't even by choice and it wasn't my coach and it wasn't my teammates. That's just how the cookie crumbled. I'm proud of us no matter what, but it's hard. It's hard.

[inside courtroom for final round to begin]

Judge Christine Weems:

All rise in the 308, the session, the Honorable Gloria E. López presiding.

Augustus Talkington:

Good afternoon, your Honor. My name is Augustus Talkington along with my co-council, Nicholas Lowrey. It is our privileged to represent the State of Lone Star today.

Jasmin Olguin:

Good afternoon, your Honor. My name is Jasmine Olguin. That is O L G U I N. And I, along with my co-counsel...

Cole Davila:

Good afternoon, your Honor. My name is Cole Davila, C O L E D A V I L A.

Jasmin Olguin:

We represent the defendant Mr. Timmy Williams.

Katie Phang, host:

It's Sunday. All of the other regional tournaments in the country have been decided. All eyes are on Texas. Both teams are exhausted. None more than Cole who has argued this case five times already. The courtroom is packed with spectators, alumni and parents. All are leaning in only one of the teams in this courtroom will get an automatic bid to the National Championship.

Augustus Talkington:

Members of the jury. Today, the evidence will show that the defendant owned illegal drugs. More than this. He intended to deliver those illegal drugs into this very community…

Cole Davila:

While opposing counsel is making their opening statements, while I am making mine, during all the witnesses, all of the evidence, during closing arguments, and even while you are deliberating, Timmy Williams is presumed to be innocent. It is not supposed to be easy to convict somebody, because we do not want the police and the government to simply take the easy way out and grab the first person they saw that day…

Augustus Talkington:

The question that the defense is going to ask you is who lived in that apartment? Now we, as the state will show that the defendant lived in that apartment. Now the defense is going to come up here and they're going to tell you a story about how the defendant's brother and his wife and kids lived in that apartment, but ask yourself, does this story make sense?..

Cole Davila:

Now you see you're going to hear from officer Perez that they took those two bags of cocaine from that nightstand, walked them downstairs, found some scales, placed them on the scales, lined up the shot and took photographs…

Jasmin Olguin:

One of your rules as a patrol officer is to give out traffic tickets. You don't investigate scenes that involve narcotics. You're not trained to handle narcotics. You became excited when you saw that cocaine.

Patrol Officer 2:

Yeah, absolutely. I mean, I'm doing my job. This is what I signed up for.

Augustus Talkington:

You lied to the police to get out of trouble. Fair?

Witness:

Very fair.

Jasmin Olguin:

Very objection, your Honor. This has been asked and answered.

Judge:

Overruled.

Augustus Talkington:

I'll ask the question again. You lied to the police to get out of trouble using your brother's license.

Witness:

That is correct. My...

Cole Davila:

Objection, hearsay to the statements of the officers.

Judge:

Sustained.

Cole Davila:

Objection, asked and answered.

Judge:

Sustained.

Cole Davila:

Objection, ask and answered.

Judge 2:

Overruled.


Jason Goss:

And they're doing it. They're coming out and executing and that's all I can ask. Just don't sit down and sweat and pass out.

Katie Phang, host:

Have you ever loved your team so much that you can't even watch them in the biggest game of the season, but you keep checking the score anyway. Well that's Jason Goss. He's pacing up and down the hallway. He quietly slips into the back of the courtroom gets anxious, comes back out, sits down, stands up, starts pacing again.

Jason Goss:

I saw Jasmin's cross. I thought it was great. She did a really good job, stayed really cool, which is important. If Cole held his own in opening, then if it's close, the closing will decide it.

Nicholas Lowrey:

May it please the court, counsel, members of the jury. Timmy Williams was found with two and a half grams of cocaine and all of his supplies for delivering that cocaine right into this community. And instead of accepting the fact that he was caught, he lied. And as I walk through each of these elements, I will discuss what those words mean. But just remember that it simply breaks down into presence of the cocaine, possession of the cocaine, and intent to deliver the cocaine.

Jasmin Olguin:

Objection, your Honor. This is a misstatement of the law. It's not presence that was established. This element. The element is just possession, which is actual care, custody and control. Not just presence as opposing counsel has stated two times already.

Judge:

Sustained. Just rephrase counsel, keep going.

Nicholas Lowrey:

Your Honor. If I may be heard?

Judge:

Nope.

Nicholas Lowrey:

Okay.

Jasmin Olguin:

We can either do what is right? Or what is easy. The state did what was easy. The members of the jury, today, we were asking you to do what is right. This failure to investigate who actually lived there, this manipulation of the evidence, that's not beyond a reasonable doubt. The state has not met their burden today. We're asking you to do what is right. And when you see this verdict form, we ask that you find Timmy Williams, not guilty.

Judge:

Anything further from either side?

Jasmin Olguin:

No, your Honor.

Judge:

All right. Jury charge has been submitted to the jury. Court is done recess while they deliberate.


Cole Davila:

Thanks, your Honor.

[team huddles in hallway during break]

Cole Davila:

If it is my last round, then it's my last round. If it's not, it's not. Either way I have to do the best I can, right? Finish out on a high note, or a strong note, or do nothing and then guarantee to be finished. But I know that my future is going to be doing this for real, so it's end of mock trial, but it's going to be the start of real trial.

Jasmin Olguin:

It was good. It was a fun round. I learned from my mistakes yesterday. And I really did go in here thinking this is the last round I could ever do for mock trial. This right here. And I knew that. I was like, I have to give it my all.

[inside courtroom after end of round]

Judge:

Absolutely. Congratulations to everybody.

Cole Davila:

It was such a great experience.

Judge:

You guys are amazing. Really.

Judge:

Yeah. That's good stuff.

Judge:

Amazing. Amazing.

Cole Davila:

Thank you.

Judge:

Great to meet you. Great performance. Really good.

Judge:

As most of the judges will tell you if you got them aside. You're better than 90% of the lawyers that appear in the courtroom.

Judge:

90% is accurate.

Judge:

It's true. It's true.

Judge:

We love it.

Judge:

I am very encouraged about the future. Be good guardians of the seventh amendment because it's under attack. So, be very good guardians of that.

Speaker 20:

That's right.

Judge:

Preserve that right to the jury in this country because people are trying to erode it and we're leaving it in your hands.

Speaker 20:

...really takes a stand on it.

Cole Davila:

We'll protect it sir.

Judge:

We're leaving it in your hands.

Cole Davila:

Sir.

[all teams gather inside large conference room for announcement of break]

Judge Christine Weems:

We have people from all 14. We have St Mary's.

Andy Vizcarra:

Here.

Judge Christine Weems:

We have Texas. Yes.

UT Austin:

Here.

Judge Christine Weems:

We have South Texas College of Law, yes?

South Texas:

Yes.

Judge Christine Weems:

We have Baylor, yes?

Baylor:

Yes.

Judge Christine Weems:

Wonderful, delightful. Congratulations. You guys. You made to the very end. I can't tell you how thrilled I am that we are done. But, needless to say, I am tremendously proud of all of you. The rounds you did, the work you did. I know you guys have worked so fricking hard to get to this moment where two of y'all will be going to Scenic Fort Worth in April. In the round of 349 Baylor versus 346 South Texas College of Law. It's going to be 346 South Texas.[crowd cheer and applause] In the round of 176 versus 163, the winner was 176 Texas.[crowd cheer and applause

Baylor coach:

Congratulations. Absolutely great job. Great weekend for you all.

Judge Christine Weems:

Congratulations.

AJ Bellido de Luna:

Go represent us well at Nationals.

Maritza Stewart:

Congratulations.

Coach:

Congratulations!

Jason Goss:

Go get it. Represent us. Go represent man. Represent. That was a tough climb.

Jason Goss:

I mean, they, they were good. They were solid. They deserve to be there. They deserve to be in the final. They deserve to represent us in national. So. You would've too. Y'all are gladiators and y'all got in there and I mean killed it. And at the end of the day they just had a team that didn't make mistakes really. They were just, you know...

AJ Bellido de Luna:

This hurts. I knew we weren't going to, I mean, I know what happened. I think you're an idiot if you don't know what happened. So.

Producer:

But they made it this far.

AJ Bellido de Luna:

No, fantastic. Right. We've always said that the road of the Championship goes through Baylor. And we did that. And it was a real emotional high. And we didn't help them get ready for that next one. We didn't separate the two. I mean, because you saw some mistakes immediately, that you hadn't seen all weekend, except for the first round. They were still good. They were still competitive. And it's only a couple of point difference between the ballots. But I think the emotional high of one, making the break, and then two, beating the number two team in the country and a team that has dominated this region for 12 years. It was a real emotional high. And I really thought that we were... don't count your chickens, right? And then I was watching it on the simulcast and I realized that we just can't. God, I wanted to win. And I wanted to win for them.


Andy Vizcarra:

It's hard. And my reaction has nothing to do with my teammates. It's just really hard. It's just like how the cookie crumbled. You know?

Jasmin Olguin:

I don't understand how we lost to them. I need to talk to coach. What happened? What went wrong?

Cole Davila:

I think that was probably my poorest round of this tournament. I don't know, kept it up for all these rounds. And then something slipped. That's going to probably be something that haunts me for a while.

Andy Vizcarra:

You were a better swing than I could ever be.

Cole Davila:

Learned it all from you. I'm glad to have made it back on the team with such a good captain. Hey, no one else could do it like you. I'll never forget that. I'll always be grateful. Always.

Andy Vizcarra:

Stop. I'm already crying Cole.

Cole Davila:

Yeah, but some things need to be said.

Andy Vizcarra:

Thanks buddy. Of course.

Cole Davila:

That's what friends are for.

[end of day, team heads into van to make the drive back home to San Antonio]

Student

Cole. I honestly am still very confident in your abilities.

Student:

Is that what you said?

Cole Davila:

I don't particularly want to be a lawyer.

Jasmin Olguin:

Well, right now I don't want to do anything. Are you feeding us?

AJ Bellido de Luna:

Of course. I mean, I think that's cruel and inhumane to not be. That would be real cold.


Student:

Well, you know what? You didn't feed us when we left.

AJ Bellido de Luna

Do we have a head count? Is everyone in the van?

Jasmin Olguin:

Yes.

AJ Bellido de Luna:

Seatbelt please.

Jason Goss:

We got six advocates and Kristen.

AJ Bellido de Luna:

Seat belts please. Good. All right. Okay. You took down the bear. You took down the king. That's awesome. That is completely awesome. And I mean, God, you cannot have been closer. Just could not have been closer. I think you guys should hold your heads really high.

Katie Phang, host:

AJ drives the team home. It's quiet in the van. This time there isn't the chatting, the phone calls, the joking around. For the three L's. The mock trial season is ending. They'll move on to finish classes, take the bar exam, get jobs. They've just gone through an amazing weekend with the highest levels of achievement, a lot of surprises, and heartbreak at the end. But through it all, it's forged, even stronger bonds between them. Almost more than anything else, the story of the St. Mary's mock trial team, is a story of friendship.

AJ Bellido de Luna:

All right, here we go. On the road again. Can't wait to get back on the road again. C'mon everybody sing along. [singing]

Jason Goss:

…I love is making music...[singing]

Jasmin Olguin:

I'll do the background.

Andy Vizcarra:

When we were in the courthouse and Jasmin goes, "You were in choir? That's a conversation for another day."


[audio tease for Episode 11]

Andy Vizcarra:

You ever feel like you've been in a boxing match with the person that taught you how to box. It's not...Yeah, it's a lot.

Jason Goss:

It's kind of like going against a child or something where, you're proud of them, but you're also trying to beat them. And I do want to beat them because I think it's justice for my client.

Katie Phang [narration]:

That's next time on Class Action. Class Action is a production of iHeartRadio and sound argument. Created, produced, written and edited by Kevin Huffman and Lisa Gray. Executive producers are Taylor Chicoine and Katrina Norvelle. Sound, design, editing, and mixing by Evan Tyor and Taylor Chicoine. This episode had additional field production by Kristen Cabrera and Alfredo De La Garza.

For more podcasts from iHeartRadio visit the iHeartRadio app, Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your favorite shows.

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END