LSU Law Finishes 3rd for Best Brief, Top 8 Overall at Prince National Evidence Moot Court Competition

The LSU Law Center took home third place for best brief and placed in the top eight overall in the nation at the Prince National Evidence Moot Court Competition.

The Paul M. Hebert team of Eric Przybysz and Stephen Stanford advanced to the quarterfinal round in the 36-team competition held March 31 to April 2 at Brooklyn Law School in New York City. The Law Center’s Prince team is coached by alumni Ms. Lindsay Jarrell Blouin (’12) and Mr. Joshua Newville (’12) of the Baton Rouge Public Defender’s Office.

In this year’s Prince competition, respondent John Creed, an officer of the Boerum City Police Department, was charged and indicted under the federal hate crime statute for allegedly shooting and killing Angelo Ortiz, a man of Italian and Ecuadorean descent, at a pro-immigrants’ rights demonstration in Boerum City. The Government intended to prove its case by relying on three critical pieces of evidence: (1) historical geolocation data tracking Officer Creed’s movements over a sixty-day period that was subpoenaed from his wireless service provider pursuant to the Stored Communications Act, and which demonstrated Creed’s presumed membership in the Brotherhood of the Knights of Boerum, a hate group committed to re-establishing white-Anglo domination of the United States ; (2) an ancient document recovered from the Brotherhood’s meeting place evidencing his long-standing and active membership in the organization; and (3) an unconfronted testimonial dying declaration made by the victim shortly before his death purporting to reveal Officer Creed’s motive in shooting and killing Angelo Ortiz. Respondent Creed moved to suppress the geolocation records and to exclude the ancient document and the victim’s dying declaration.

The district court found all three items inadmissible, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourteenth Circuit affirmed. The Supreme Court has granted certiorari to resolve these issues that raise complex and important constitutional and evidentiary questions at the intersection of the “new” and the “old.”