This is the beginning of the 19th year of Project LEAD and the 1st year at our new courthouse in Pointe a la Hache! On December 6, 2019, District Judges Kevin Conner and Michael Clement along with retired 4th Circuit Judge Michael Kirby presided over 6 mock trials with students from Belle Chasse Middle School. Students were placed in key roles such as, prosecutors, defense attorneys, court reporter, deputy clerk, bailiff, jurors, defendant, victim and witnesses.
The goal of Project L. E. A. D. (Legal Enrichment And Decision-making) is to help students recognize and consider the potential consequences of difficult decisions faced during adolescence and beyond. During the course of the year, the students performed skits which focused on peer pressure, bullying, truancy, self-control, self-respect and self-esteem and it taught them how to handle and/or avoid choices that can often lead to delinquent conduct and criminal activity.
There were 200 6th grade students who participated in the trial. The District Attorney’s Office would like to thank Plaquemines Parish School Board, Belle Chasse Middle School, Judge Michael Kirby, Judge Kevin Conner, Judge Michael Clement, Clerk of Court Kim Vaughan, the Assistant District Attorneys and staff. The printing of material and props needed for this program were made possible through the Plaquemines Parish District Attorney’s Office Discretionary Fund.