The public is invited to the Victoria courthouse on Saturday to celebrate Law Day with police dog demonstrations and tours of the prisoner cells and sheriff vans.
This year’s theme is Access to Justice. The open house will be held from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Sponsored by the Canadian and Victoria Bar Associations, Law Day recognizes the signing of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms by the Queen and Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau in 1982. Its goal is to inform the public about access to law and the justice system.
From 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., people can meet a sheriff and tour the cells where accused people are held before they are brought into court.
At 11 a.m., provincial court Judge Carmen Rogers and Master Carolyn Bouck will give a talk and answer questions in courtroom 203.
Victoria police dogs will be put through their paces at noon on the lawn of Christ Church Cathedral.
A mock jury trial for children, based on the movie Zootopia, begins at 1 p.m. in courtroom 301. Characters will be in costume and children will be invited to sit on the jury.
Community groups that play a role in the justice system will make presentations about the services they provide in civil, criminal and family-law matters.
Throughout the day, 14 teams from 10 high schools will compete in the B.C. Provincial High School Mock Trial Competition.
The competition, sponsored by the Justice Education Society and the Victoria Bar Association, begins at 9:30 a.m. The students have been preparing for months to take part in a controversial murder trial.
“It’s not just the students playing the Crown and the defence, students also play the witnesses and the accused. There is a lot of talent and it is very entertaining,” said guest judge Michael Butterfield.