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Release: Immediate

UI law students argue mock case Sept. 13 before Iowa Supreme Court

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- University of Iowa law students will argue the legal merits of requiring the public to be notified when convicted sex offenders move into a community in a moot case before the justices of the Iowa Supreme Court Saturday, Sept. 13 at the College of Law.

Debating constitutional issues that have sparked controversy nationally, students will present their arguments beginning at 10 a.m. in Levitt Auditorium of the Boyd Law Building.

The mock court session is one of several events in the century-old tradition of Supreme Court Day at the law school.

N. William Hines, dean of the UI College of Law, said Supreme Court Day activities gives students a chance to observe how cases on appeal are prepared and argued. The day also is an opportunity for students and faculty to become better acquainted with the justices of Iowa's highest court.

"Supreme Court Day continues a time-honored link between students and faculty and the state's highest court," Hines says. "Our law school was founded by Chief Justice George G. Wright in 1865. Supreme Court Day recognizes our origins and has become one of the most important annual events at the Iowa law school."

The justices will hear arguments on a mock case based on a fictitious Iowa statute that requires convicted sex offenders to be registered when they are released from prison and that requires law enforcement officers and the general public to be notified when a person convicted of aggravated sexual offenses moves into their community.

The case, adapted from the National Moot Court competition, involves an appeal to the high court on whether the requirements of registering and publicly disclosing a convicted person's record and home address should be considered an additional ex post facto punishment and therefore unconstitutional.

Members of the College of Law's National Moot Court team will present the two sides of the case. They are: Corinne A. Brannaman of Shellsburg; Christine Conover of Mapleton; Ashish Mishra of West Des Moines; B. Shaatir Pepukayi of Wilmington, Del.; Jennifer Schulz of Storm Lake; and James Nathan (Chip) Spolar of Knoxville.

The court session will be followed by a reception for students, faculty and the justices in Grahame Courtyard of the Boyd Law Building. The reception is sponsored by the Cedar Rapids law firm of Shuttleworth and Ingersoll.