Four Clinics Cases Among Missouri's Top for 2013
Missouri Lawyers Weekly recently published its semi-annual list of Major Opinions, what it deems are the most important opinions of the previous six months. Of the 197 appellate cases, four were handled by students and faculty in the SLU LAW Legal Clinics.
Youth Advocacy Clinic student Stephanie Allen ('14), under the supervision of Professor Patricia Harrison, successfully argued an appeal in a juvenile delinquency case that was the only juvenile case selected to the newspaper’s list. The Missouri Court of Appeals for the Western District held, in a case of first impression, that unlawful entry into a building cannot be the sole evidence to support the element of intent on a charge of second-degree burglary. The Court reversed the judgment of delinquency.
Three of the six cases selected in the unemployment category were handled by the Litigation Clinic. Sophie Zavaglia (‘13), Paul Schmitz ('14) and Chris Stuffle ('14) argued cases on behalf of workers denied unemployment benefits. Two of the cases were in the Eastern District and one was in the Western District.
Each Clinic student tends to be responsible for six to 10 cases per semester. Missouri Lawyers Weekly’s third-party endorsement of their success underscores the impact Clinic students can have on the development of the law. “Law is not a static thing,” said Professor John Ammann, supervisor of the Litigation Clinic. “Students’ ability to shape the law is a powerful tool, in addition to their ability to provide legal counsel to a client who would otherwise not be able to afford representation.”