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Drake team wins ABA appellate advocacy regionals

March 15, 2016
Drake's ABA appellate advocacy regional champion team: Thomas Bakke, Daniel Peacock, Anagha Dixit, and coach Donald Stanley Jr.

Drake Law School’s team of Thomas Bakke (3L), Anagha Dixit (3L), and Daniel Peacock (2L) was crowned champion at the regional American Bar Association (ABA) National Appellate Advocacy Competition in Boston on March 3-5.

The competition emphasizes the development of oral advocacy skills through a realistic appellate advocacy experience.

Teams must write a brief as either respondent or petitioner and then argue the case in front of a panel of judges acting as the United States Supreme Court.

This year’s mock case involved a racially-charged police officer and a shooting at a traffic stop. The teams had to argue to the court the following issues: Do police officers have a reasonable expectation of privacy in their department-issued lockers? Can police officers be prosecuted under the federal hate crime statue, and if so, how should it be applied?

The Drake team finished undefeated (5-0), defeating law school teams from the University of Cincinnati, University of Akron, South Texas College of Law, Southern Methodist University, and Texas Tech University.

Drake was also awarded the top brief in the region.

Drake Law School will move on to the ABA National Appellate Advocacy National Finals in Chicago on April 7-9.

About 200 teams participated in a total of six regional competitions across the country, out of which only 24 teams advanced to the national finals.

This is the second consecutive year that Drake has advanced to the ABA National Appellate Advocacy National Finals. Dixit and Bakke were both members of Drake Law School teams that competed in the national finals last year.

The team is coached by Donald Stanley Jr., LW’00.