Moot Court semester review

By Cody Guarnieri, Moot Court Executive Director, and Andrea Gomes, Moot Court Secretary

This semester, the Connecticut Moot Court Board has been very active both on campus and interscholastically. Along with co-sponsoring a litigation night for 1Ls with the Mock Trial Society, hosting Connecticut Supreme Court Justice Peter T. Zarella and hosting the annual William H. Hastie intramural competition, members of the Board have competed in several interscholastic competitions of note, exhibiting the devotion and skill that has come to be expected of UCONN Law students.

First, Radha Mohan, Hailey Gallant and Caitlin Loftus participated in the Burton D. Wechsler First Amendment Moot Court Competition at American University in Washington, D.C on October 21st and 22nd. The petitioner, a fictional church, protested outside a military funeral in order to promote its views on illegal immigration. In doing so, the church violated a state statute prohibiting picketing within 1,000 feet and from one hour before to one hour after the funeral. The first issue involved the constitutionality of the state law prohibiting picketing outside military funerals. The second issue involved petitioner’s tax-exempt status as a religious institution.

Next, Aaron Rosenberg and Doug Dalena competed in the National Criminal

Procedure Moot Court Tournament held by the University of San Diego School of Law. November 3rd through November 5th. Aaron argued a Fifth Amendment question concerning whether federal agents were required to give Miranda warnings after confronting a drug suspect in a diner. Doug argued a Fourth Amendment question concerning whether federal agents needed a warrant to install a GPS tracking device on the suspect’s car to track his movements. Of 44 teams competing, Aaron and Doug advanced to the round of sixteen and scored in the top eight.

Finally, Marco Allocca, Allison Pannozzo and Cody Guarnieri will be competing in the National Moot Court Competition, Region 1, in Boston on November 18th through the 20th. This competition is hosted by Suffolk Law School and includes competing law schools from throughout New England and New York. Marco and Allison will be arguing whether the First Amendment precludes a public school district from disciplining a student for creating an online post regarding another student, which created a disruption the school’s administration. Cody’s argument will address a circuit-split regarding what level of mental culpability in relation to the spoliation of evidence is sufficient for a district court to grant the innocent party an adverse inference.

The Connecticut Moot Court Board thanks its membership and the student body for a productive semester and looks forward to advancing appellate advocacy skills in the spring. Have a happy holiday season!


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