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University of Iowa News Release

Release: March 19, 2003

Top Honors Named for Mock Trial Teams

The UI College of Law's Baskerville and Van Oosterhout moot court team competitions recently wrapped up their seasons with six students taking top honors.

In the Baskerville competition, Mark Konrad won the honors for Best Brief, Chace Ramey won Best Oralist and Joseph Clamon won Best Advocate. In the Van Oosterhout competition, Stephen Rueter won for Best Brief, Sarah Brown for Best Oralist and Christine Ritland for Best Advocate.

Members of the two teams argued their cases before a panel of three judges that consisted of Jerry L. Larson, assistant chief justice of the Iowa Supreme Court; Ruth V. McGregor, vice chief justice of the Arizona Supreme Court; and Linda R. Reade, U.S. district judge for the Northern District of Iowa.

"The three visiting judges for the finals presented the advocates with a knowledgeable and lively bench to which to address their carefully prepared arguments," said William Hines, dean of the law school.

Arguments were held March 8.

In addition, the finals set the competitors for argument at next fall's Supreme Court Day mock trial, when Clamon and Brown will argue against Ramey and Ritland.

The top four students in the Baskerville competition will represent the College of Law in the Chicago Bar Association Moot Court Competition in Chicago, while the Van Oosterhout competitors will represent the college at the National Moot Court Competition in New York City.

The finals were the completion of a months-long process in which students argued a Fourth Amendment and an Eighth Amendment case before panels of various judges. Student advocates engaged in both oral argument before the judges and wrote briefs. In this year's competition, the student advocates argued the constitutional sufficiency of using an anonymous tip to stop a suspect. Regarding the Eighth Amendment issue, advocates argued the constitutionality of three-strikes law as applied to a defendant with convictions for relatively minor felonies.

Advocates must argue both sides of the cases and are judged for their legal reasoning, acuity, communication ability and all-around legal skills.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Service, 300 Plaza Centre One, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

CONTACT(S): Tom Snee, 319-384-0010, tom-snee@uiowa.edu.