Kingsdown Magistrates' Court has heard the case of a boy accused of snatching an iPhone from a pedestrian.

Even though the case, the trial and the court were make-believe, Swindon and Wiltshire's former Police and Crime Commissioner Angus Macpherson commented that the court proceedings "sounded really quite real".

Year 8 and 9 pupils from Kingsdown School conducted a mock trial ahead of the national Magistrates' Court Mock Trial Competition in March.

The young prosecution and defence teams battled it out as they questioned and cross-examined witnesses and the made-up defendant Alex Young.

The group of magistrates, led by retired Wiltshire magistrate Martyn Cook, then deliberated before finding the defendant not guilty due to a lack of evidence.

Despite this verdict, the judging panel crowned the prosecution team the winners of the "mock" competition.

Mr Macpherson was joined by Nikki Alberry, a former High Sheriff, and Sergeant Andy Poole from Stratton Neighbourhood Policing Team.

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Mr Cook, who spent weeks helping the students to prepare for the trial, concluded the event by summarising how the magistrates' courts work to the audience.

Afterwards, Mr Macpherson said: "It sounded really quite real. It's a great lesson in the consequences of your actions and

"Judging was very difficult and they'd all prepared very well for it.

"Hopefully they have learnt a lot about the court process in Martyn's discussions with them."

Teacher Mrs Strett said: "This competition helps them to be able to articulate an argument within a context.

"It's a skill that isn't really taught.

"They have been phenomenal and have worked so hard from day.

"They have really engaged with it all.

"In terms of the questions, the students changed and refined them based off the witness's answers.

"I think the prosecution did a very good job of undermining the witnesses but ultimately there wasn't enough evidence to convict.

"Martyn's done a fantastic job of explaining it all to them so they really understood what they were doing."

Headteacher Mrs Leigh-Bennett added: "There was an audience here of 60 children and it was very clear to see they were all on the edge of their seats and it could've gone either way.

"We've been engaged with the competition for the last seven years.

"Today, it was wonderful to watch after they spent hours and hours every week preparing.

"What they've learnt today is more about the consequences of our choices."

The same team will go forward for the national competition in March.