Class Notes: 4/18/17

Have an outspoken atheist person who helps lobby across the state

Going to watch a video to start off

“An atheist is someone who does not believe in God”

Does not have enough proof to suggest that there is a God.

Says he is pissed off because he feels his group is treated just like LGBT community and muslims.

“I’m all for religious freedom”

April 3rd, 2017 – Mayor decided to say a prayer before the meeting

Supreme Court ruled that they can have a prayer

His beef is that the prayer is always christian and the mayor always hogs that time

He does not stand for the pledge of allegiance

Now in City Council meeting – walked right up to the podium when asked if there were any public comments.

Says he heard about christian prayers before the meeting starts.

“I would request equal treatment for atheists in this city”

Apparently he showed up to last nights city council meeting suggesting he’d sue about this?

“I suppose you could say your own quiet thing you want” – mayor in response to allowing people of the non theistic people’s prayers before the meetings?

“At this representation, no representation outside of your view?” – dude in class questioning the mayor

Says that 1 out of 3 millennials are not religious. Guest speaker sitting on the council. Says that 1 out of 3 do not belong to an organized church…?

Talks about invocations – basically a hey let’s use reason today and use the current law have a good day – not worshiping something or seeking guidance from a “greater being”

Timi Brown-? —- sponsored him and his prayer?

Justin Scott Atheist Iowa

Separate city council meeting – this one has Quentin Hart the mayor – Justin says atheist prayer at the meeting

This prayer is taking a lot of time… at least in comparison to the other theist speech by mayor in earlier video

now on to the video ——–

McCollum v. Board of Education

McCollum sued state for the teaching of religion in public schools.

1951? Champagne, Illinois

“You cannot bring God into the public school”


Class Notes 4/4/17

Black hawk county jail
Sheriff tony thompson 8 years
240 or so inmates
Population that size not a lot of tours or access
Who you know not what you know to do something like this
Direct supervision jail in a pod with 50 inmates and one jailer locked in with them
4th largest jail in iowa built in 96
Average stay length 90 days cannot exceed one year misdemeanor chargers
Over one year go to prison
Murder rape assault most inmates here
Forcebly felony 1/3rd of population here
90 day average stay is now 4-5 months
Graduated from uni with com
Taught at uni 8 years criminology
Dont get a lot off access to the sheriff normally
Ran unopposed last election
517 house file stand your ground bill hes not introduced or not worried about
More worried about some certain court cases where people can take guns into court big problem?
Castle dkctrine – you can shoot someone who is there unlawfully
Arguement is this can go anywhere thus stand your ground
Stand your ground gives bad people a reason to shoot more/excuse
Concern is people carrying guns in courthouse
Pre 2011 sheriffs can meet with you and decide if you can get gun or permits and what not this changed because a few sheriffs having certain biases
He wears a body cam
98% of the time validates what police say
All officers are on duty they wear them
Field deputies and jailers wear them
130 cameras around facilities
80% of crime in black hawk county is substance related legal and illegal
92 deputies working under him
140 total staff
15 million budget
“We need information out there” talking about being good to the press and maintaining relationships
“Transparency buys me credibility”
“They learned dont fuck with tony” talking about cops doing stupid stuff to not or theyll get fired

Class Notes 3/28/17

Anelia asked what it feels like every time she talks about Mark

Says her eldest son came home and was worried about her. Said she is speaking publically about Mark.

“How will you ever heal completely if you keep opening that wound? – eldest son says

“It is helping other people” “I don’t want any other mother or father sitting in our shoes one day”

She is appreciative that our generation is very open to people with mental illness

Hearing back from various families about them getting help is satisfying.

Anelia – the day your world changed

june 24, 2009

“I could not be home alone with Mark”

It was too dangerous to be alone

Go out and pick up sticks… Mark was released from mental health unit on a Wednesday not Friday so had to deal with that.

A lot of talk about “Commie” government

“Didn’t you hear?” maybe it was a heart attack that killed ed thomas? he often asked for prayers for his heart?

Ed Thomas would ask family after every sunday school and ask mark was and prayed with them.

“I’ve heard coach thomas has been shot” “Yes Coach Thomas is dead”

Neighbor told them

he believed god was telling him to kill ed thomas his mom and father because he was poison ing the minds of the children in the community

They knew he was insane. But Iowa courts doesn’t work like that . Might have given him less years, went to mental health unit came out in 20 years and live the rest of his life instead of life.

“If Iowa had something like that, then a jury could wrap their minds around that”

“I just saw mark for the first time last week” ????

He is in general population but is doing “good”

He started with 4 medications and is now down to 1

He said a psychologists book about paranoid ski… admitted he had an illness in his brain

Can email him whenever they want and feel blessed when they can see him. Helps them get use to the system.

he works full time. encourages them to continue medication after they get out and keep seeing their doctor.

He was under suicide watch for a long time.

“It was so incredibly real that day”

She doesn’t know the answer what happened that day…. what intervened to make him do it?

“he is such a gentle soul” she said in response to Meredith asking if Mark has had these thoughts before

Would say ed thomas was sending “goons” to get him and felt that he had to talk sense in to them thats what he would say

threatened himself a lot but not others

When did you notice a shift in his behavior? – she journaled about her three boys but when she went back they noticed different episodes

noticed when he was around 16 – when he got caught with marijuana.

After being a leader amongst his peers… “why would did you do this?” talking about marijuana

“We should have set up family and individual counseling to find out the bottom of this”

This is when the voices started taking over more

“The voices have always been there… and they scared me”. he always wanted to sleep with mom and dad because he was scared. she feels bad for putting him to bed and not knowing.

he didn’t know what to say as a kid to tell his parents he heard the voices.

“I didn’t want to be crazy” he said he didn’t want to admit he was hearing voices when he was 16.

Mark graduated high school just fine. he enrolled and dropped out of college 3 time. very excited every time. then mid to late semester you begin to see his decline.

what’s going on here?

He took heavy drugs to get rid of the issues but it didn’t work and it clouded the doctors from making a proper decision/diagnosis. did that for about 4 years.

he moved 12 times and had 11 different jobs. came back home when things got too bad. every 9 months or so.

There was no diagnosis up until he went to prison and was able to get help by their psychiatrist. he was having horrific psychotic episodes.

“He’s so physical when he’d have those episode” “he was a loose cannon. you didn’t know what he was going to do to you or someone else”.

She wishes she would have gone to these hospitals in person because some places were hiding behind the HIPA laws and she just wanted them to listen to their side of the story.

“What is it going to take to get our son the help that he desperately needs” – it shouldn’t of taken prison for her son to get the help he needs. This is why she speaks. There is so much to do.

“Grueling” when asked what is like sitting in the court room. She was shocked about the half truths that were being shared. They just didn’t share the whole truth. It was really hard to see something like that happen.

had to go to sheriffs office

her husband

youngest son

youngest son 7 years younger than Mark

questioned individually – young son prayed for parents out loud

went home and left town

stayed with family that night wouldn’t allow them to watch tv

only thing they saw was ed thomas son Aaron’s speech asking to not blame becker family

church members guarded house and didn’t let the media come close to them

She has forgiven everyone in this situation. thomas family will do that on their own time and that’s okay.

he would see slinky shapes outside in the trees. scared of beers coming out of tv couldn’t watch tv. no radio because of the “subliminal messages”. scared of things getting him while he slept so  she as well as husband had to be awake when he was. he refused to sleep downstairs.

Class Notes 3/7/17

Wavily City Council meeting 3/6/17

1hr 9 minutes in – had conversation about this and opinions from classmates

Texas vs Johnson – case – read, review and share some info.

Taken straight from “Facts and Case Summary – Texas v. Johnson – United States Courts”

here is the link to this case – Texas v. Johnson

“Gregory Lee Johnson burned an American flag outside of the convention center where the 1984 Republican National Convention was being held in Dallas, Texas. Johnson burned the flag to protest the policies of President Ronald Reagan. He was arrested and charged with violating a Texas statute that prevented the desecration of a venerated object, including the American flag, if such action were likely to incite anger in others. A Texas court tried and convicted Johnson. He appealed, arguing that his actions were “symbolic speech” protected by the First Amendment. The Supreme Court agreed to hear his case.”

What exactly was the issue at hand?

Whether or not burning the American Flag is protected by the First Ammendment as “symbolic speech”

The Supreme Courts ruling – YES

More information from  Cornell University Law School’s website –

Argued – March 21st, 1989

Decided – June 21st, 1989

This ruling was taken into consideration because of the current laws as listed below:

Tex.Penal Code Ann. § 42.09 (1989) provides in full:

§ 42.09. Desecration of Venerated Object

(a) A person commits an offense if he intentionally or knowingly desecrates:

(1) a public monument;

(2) a place of worship or burial; or

(3) a state or national flag.

(b) For purposes of this section, “desecrate” means deface, damage, or otherwise physically mistreat in a way that the actor knows will seriously offend one or more persons likely to observe or discover his action.

(c) An offense under this section is a Class A misdemeanor.

Because the prosecutor’s closing argument observed that Johnson had led the protestors in chants denouncing the flag while it burned, Johnson suggests that he may have been convicted for uttering critical words, rather than for burning the flag. Brief for Respondent 33-34. He relies on Street v. New York, 394 U.S. 576, 578 (1969), in which we reversed a conviction obtained under a New York statute that prohibited publicly defying or casting contempt on the flag “either by words or act” because we were persuaded that the defendant may have been convicted for his words alone. Unlike the law we faced in Street, however, the Texas flag desecration statute does not on its face permit conviction for remarks critical of the flag, as Johnson himself admits. See Brief for Respondent 34. Nor was the jury in this case told that it could convict Johnson of flag desecration if it found only that he had uttered words critical of the flag and its referents.

Johnson emphasizes, though, that the jury was instructed — according to Texas’ law of parties — that

“a person is criminally responsible for an offense committed by the conduct of another if acting with intent to promote or assist the commission of the offense, he solicits, encourages, directs, aids, or attempts to aid the other person to commit the offense.”

Brief for Respondent 2, n. 2, quoting 1 Record 49. The State offered this instruction because Johnson’s defense was that he was not the person who had burned the flag. Johnson did not object to this instruction at trial, and although he challenged it on direct appeal, he did so only on the ground that there was insufficient evidence to support it. 706 S.W.2d 120, 124 (Tex.App.1986). It is only in this Court that Johnson has argued that the law-of-parties instruction might have led the jury to convict him for his words alone. Even if we were to find that this argument is properly raised here, however, we would conclude that it has no merit in these circumstances. The instruction would not have permitted a conviction merely for the pejorative nature of Johnson’s words, and those words themselves did not encourage the burning of the flag, as the instruction seems to require. Given the additional fact that “the bulk of the State’s argument was premised on Johnson’s culpability as a sole actor,” ibid., we find it too unlikely that the jury convicted Johnson on the basis of this alternative theory to consider reversing his conviction on this ground.

Although Johnson has raised a facial challenge to Texas’ flag desecration statute, we choose to resolve this case on the basis of his claim that the statute, as applied to him, violates the First Amendment. Section 42.09 regulates only physical conduct with respect to the flag, not the written or spoken word, and although one violates the statute only if one “knows” that one’s physical treatment of the flag “will seriously offend one or more persons likely to observe or discover his action,” Tex.Penal Code Ann. § 42.09(b) (1989), this fact does not necessarily mean that the statute applies only to expressive conduct protected by the First Amendment. Cf. Smith v. Goguen, 415 U.S. 566, 588 (1974) (WHITE, J., concurring in judgment) (statute prohibiting “contemptuous” treatment of flag encompasses only expressive conduct). A tired person might, for example, drag a flag through the mud, knowing that this conduct is likely to offend others, and yet have no thought of expressing any idea; neither the language nor the Texas courts’ interpretations of the statute precludes the possibility that such a person would be prosecuted for flag desecration. Because the prosecution of a person who had not engaged in expressive conduct would pose a different case, and because this case may be disposed of on narrower grounds, we address only Johnson’s claim that § 42.09, as applied to political expression like his, violates the First Amendment.

Relying on our decision in Boos v. Barry, 485 U.S. 312″] 485 U.S. 312 (1988), Johnson argues that this state interest is related to the suppression of free expression within the meaning of 485 U.S. 312 (1988), Johnson argues that this state interest is related to the suppression of free expression within the meaning of United States v. O’Brien, 391 U.S. 367 (1968). He reasons that the violent reaction to flag burnings feared by Texas would be the result of the message conveyed by them, and that this fact connects the State’s interest to the suppression of expression. Brief for Respondent 12, n. 11. This view has found some favor in the lower courts. See Monroe v. State Court of Fulton County, 739 F.2d 568 574-575 (CA11 1984). Johnson’s theory may overread Boos insofar as it suggests that a desire to prevent a violent audience reaction is “related to expression” in the same way that a desire to prevent an audience from being offended is “related to expression.” Because we find that the State’s interest in preventing breaches of the peace is not implicated on these facts, however, we need not venture further into this area.

There is, of course, a tension between this argument and the State’s claim that one need not actually cause serious offense in order to violate § 42.09. See Brief for Petitioner 44.

Cf. Smith v. Goguen, 415 U.S. at 590-591 (BLACKMUN, J., dissenting) (emphasizing that lower court appeared to have construed state statute so as to protect physical integrity of the flag in all circumstances); id. at 597-598 (REHNQUIST, J., dissenting) (same).

Texas suggests that Johnson’s conviction did not depend on the onlookers’ reaction to the flag burning, because § 42.09 is violated only when a person physically mistreats the flag in a way that he “knows will seriously offend one or more persons likely to observe or discover his action.” Tex.Penal Code Ann. § 42.09(b) (1969) (emphasis added). “The ‘serious offense’ language of the statute,” Texas argues, “refers to an individual’s intent and to the manner in which the conduct is effectuated, not to the reaction of the crowd.” Brief for Petitioner 44. If the statute were aimed only at the actor’s intent, and not at the communicative impact of his actions, however, there would be little reason for the law to be triggered only when an audience is “likely” to be present. At Johnson’s trial, indeed, the State itself seems not to have seen the distinction between knowledge and actual communicative impact that it now stresses: it proved the element of knowledge by offering the testimony of persons who had in fact been seriously offended by Johnson’s conduct. Id. at 6-7. In any event, we find the distinction between Texas’ statute and one dependent on actual audience reaction too precious to be of constitutional significance. Both kinds of statutes clearly are aimed at protecting onlookers from being offended by the ideas expressed by the prohibited activity.

Our inquiry is, of course, bounded by the particular facts of this case and by the statute under which Johnson was convicted. There was no evidence that Johnson himself stole the flag he burned, Tr. of Oral Arg. 17, nor did the prosecution or the arguments urged in support of it depend on the theory that the flag was stolen. Ibid. Thus, our analysis does not rely on the way in which the flag was acquired, and nothing in our opinion should be taken to suggest that one is free to steal a flag so long as one later uses it to communicate an idea. We also emphasize that Johnson was prosecuted only for flag desecration — not for trespass, disorderly conduct, or arson.

Texas claims that “Texas is not endorsing, protecting, avowing or prohibiting any particular philosophy.” Brief for Petitioner 29. If Texas means to suggest that its asserted interest does not prefer Democrats over Socialists, or Republicans over Democrats, for example, then it is beside the point, for Johnson does not rely on such an argument. He argues instead that the State’s desire to maintain the flag as a symbol of nationhood and national unity assumes that there is only one proper view of the flag. Thus, if Texas means to argue that its interest does not prefer any viewpoint over another, it is mistaken; surely one’s attitude toward the flag and its referents is a viewpoint.

Our decision in Halter v. Nebraska, 205 U.S. 34 (1907), addressing the validity of a state law prohibiting certain commercial uses of the flag, is not to the contrary. That case was decided “nearly 20 years before the Court concluded that the First Amendment applies to the States by virtue of the Fourteenth Amendment.” Spence v. Washington, 418 U.S. 405, 413, n. 7 (1974). More important, as we continually emphasized in Halter itself, that case involved purely commercial, rather than political, speech. 205 U.S. at 38, 41, 42, 45.

Nor does San Francisco Arts & Athletics, Inc. v. United States Olympic Committee, 483 U.S. 522, 524 (1987), addressing the validity of Congress’ decision to “authoriz[e] the United States Olympic Committee to prohibit certain commercial and promotional uses of the word ‘Olympic,'” relied upon by THE CHIEF JUSTICE’s dissent, post at 429, even begin to tell us whether the government may criminally punish physical conduct towards the flag engaged in as a means of political protest.

THE CHIEF JUSTlCE’s dissent appears to believe that Johnson’s conduct may be prohibited and, indeed, criminally sanctioned, because “his act . . . conveyed nothing that could not have been conveyed and was not conveyed just as forcefully in a dozen different ways.” Post at 431. Not only does this assertion sit uneasily next to the dissent’s quite correct reminder that the flag occupies a unique position in our society — which demonstrates that messages conveyed without use of the flag are not “just as forcefu[l]” as those conveyed with it — but it also ignores the fact that, in Spence, supra, we “rejected summarily” this very claim. See 418 U.S. at 411, n. 4.


The American flag played a central role in our Nation’s most tragic conflict, when the North fought against the South. The lowering of the American flag at Fort Sumter was viewed as the start of the war. G. Preble, History of the Flag of the United States of America 453 (1880). The Southern States, to formalize their separation from the Union, adopted the “Stars and Bars” of the Confederacy. The Union troops marched to the sound of “Yes We’ll Rally Round The Flag Boys, We’ll Rally Once Again.” President Abraham Lincoln refused proposals to remove from the [p424] American flag the stars representing the rebel States, because he considered the conflict not a war between two nations, but an attack by 11 States against the National Government. Id. at 411. By war’s end, the American flag again flew over “an indestructible union, composed of indestructible states.” Texas v. White, 7 Wall. 700, 725 (1869).

STEVENS, J., Dissenting Opinion

JUSTICE STEVENS, dissenting. – listed below

As the Court analyzes this case, it presents the question whether the State of Texas, or indeed the Federal Government, has the power to prohibit the public desecration of the American flag. The question is unique. In my judgment, rules that apply to a host of other symbols, such as state flags, armbands, or various privately promoted emblems of political or commercial identity, are not necessarily controlling. Even if flagburning could be considered just another species of symbolic speech under the logical application of the rules that the Court has developed in its interpretation of the First Amendment in other contexts, this case has an intangible dimension that makes those rules inapplicable.

A country’s flag is a symbol of more than “nationhood and national unity.” Ante at 407, 410, 413, and n. 9, 417, 420. It also signifies the ideas that characterize the society that has chosen that emblem as well as the special history that has animated the growth and power of those ideas. The fleurs-de-lis and the tricolor both symbolized “nationhood and national unity,” but they had vastly different meanings. The message conveyed by some flags — the swastika, for example — may survive long after it has outlived its usefulness as a symbol of regimented unity in a particular nation.

Class Notes 2/28/17

Watching video – Spotlight

Boston Globe meeting

This video is about uncovering some judicail or priest sexual stuff.. Couldn’t understand at first. Will find out

Meeting saying goodbye from Boston Globe

“What the hell do you know” – Michael Keaton character – Robby?

News offices – conversation – talk of others leaving newspapers for other ones or cutting journalists by 15%.

Boston Globe sold to New York Times?

Robby –

Spoghtlight – four piece investigative team reports to one man do not publish work. Work on pieces for months.

“Internet is cutting into the classifiedes”

“So you anticipate more cuts” –  Robby

“I think we can do better” – Marty Baron?

All of them sitting in meeting room talking through daily briefing? Next day after Robby and Marty’s

Mr. Guaratene – can prove the cardinal knew about priest(s) who molested at least 8 kids?

Everyone except Marty thinks making the church release documents proving the sexual misconduct. Fear the people will not be okay with their paper anymore? Won’t buy?

“The Role of The Outsider” – Anelia wants us to focus on this and the power it can bring.

Robby brings up dropping their current Spotlight case for this “Cardinal Law” case Baron wants them to pick up on and investigate.

“there’s gonna be a story” – Female reporters husband? Reporter is on the Spotlight team?

“53% of our subscriber base are catholic” – owner of the paper?

“These are shitty cases” – business man they visit in the city? Lawyer?

“Have you met Mitch Garabedean?” – papers lawyer? – as in he’s a hard ass

Garabedean is now being questioned by reporter and he doesn’t want to talk. Keeps wanting the reporter to go away. “I can’t talk to you right now” – G says.

Cardinal Bernard Law? – this the guy who did it?

= use our resources, they are searching their own papers about all this adding up over time. this would not of happened without the outsider pushing this

“Knowledge is one thing, but faith… faith is another” – Cardinal Bernard Law? or the priest who did the crime?

Marty Baron – new owner of paper? – sitting and talking with the cardinal? Cardinal law?

Man in office talking about his organization of past children who were molested by priests? He talks about cardinals or priests making kids feel like they have to listen to them about bad things to them to do. It’s not just a physical thing but a “spiritual” thing. – Phil

phil sent this to the Globe “years ago” and some one said they don’t want it. Didn’t share the name. Pissed they didn’t go deeper into this 5 years ago when he sent a box full of information to them.

Reporter is still trying to get the lawyer to give him information about the church. He will not budge.

Reporter mentions that “Spotlight” is investigating this and now the lawyer tells him to come back tomorrow morning for a meeting.

Lawyer, client, source all meeting. Sits there and says he doesn’t have to continue if he doesn’t want to.

He relates to the guy right away by asking him where he is from.

Guy says he was 12 and dad killed him self and mom was nuts when all this stuff happened.

Gay guy girl is investigating/questioning says priest knew he was gay but he wasn’t sharing that info at that time. Says priest tells him they need to play strip poker and lost.

“People need to actually know what happened” – Girl reports on this.

“He offers to take me to get ice cream” – guy journalists interview

“His hand slides up and grabs my dick and I just froze up petrified” – “I never even ate my ice cream, it just melted down my arm”.

“You can use my name” – lawyer client

“Thanks Patrick” – guy reporter

“Don’t thank me just get these Assholes” – lawyer client



Class Notes: 2/14/17

Media tells people what is good coverage/what is not

The norm in DC has been turned upside down

Question of press confrences – calling on the “smaller guys” in the back. More local stations – not really calling on the bigger stations like normal.

Handpicking reporters going to call on from the audience – complaints – truth is presidents do that all the same.

The real trick is to not “bitch and complain” rather find a way to adapt.

National medias are complaining about this whereas the smaller stations are not as much.

The internet is also “shaking up” everything. A lot of smaller papers went under because they did not move with the times.

Local stuff – getting the correct info out there

Policy needs to be front in center

Collective Bargaining = big deal in news

People comment bad things on the stories KWWL post.

Has to be careful with personal comments on Facebook so it doesn’t look bad on himself and KWWL.

You have to have a balance of things – keep the variety going

Video Now:

Ron Steele – Victim identified

Taylor Bailey – Reporter goes up to house you can see blood, gun shots, ski mask.

Not going to go into a crime scene… waited for the crime scene tape to be gone.

If you show the pics of the bullet holes owners of house could come back and charge you with trespassing. They stood far away and zoomed in just to be safe.

As Journalists… you represent the people

Sheriff… represents the government

Want t0 get everything done and over with ASAP.

Slide Show:

RTDNA Code of Ethics

Journalists accepts responsibility, articulates its reasons and opens its processes to public scrutiny

Journalism provides enormous benefits to self governing societies. In the process, it

The right to broadcast/publish doesn’t mean you always have to do it. Shying away from difficult cases is not necessarily more ethical than taking on the challenge of reporting them


Email outrage


“Be suspect” Never believe what someone just told you – always assume its a lie until you have proof otherwise

Brief summary of this and print out Supreme Court decision – check sent stuff in email.

Class Notes 2/7/17

Written words feel a little more “etched in stone” – Anelia

Listening to talk about RAINN?

  • Rape, Abuse, & Incest National Network

Your Word Is Your Bond

Should always be the victims choice if they should share their names


Looking now at Rolling Stones, “A Rape on Campus” by Sabrina Rubin Erdely

Original Story


Read into the original story. Plenty of talking points and very interesting.

Watched video with a reporter and got his take on everything

Now watching an episode of 20/20 about what happened to ‘Jackie’ etc.

She went to Rolling Stone before the police. Red flags

Watching second part to 20/20 episode. No notes – can find probably from or maybe just search?


Class Notes 1/31/17

Pick judge from Story County and study them.

Story County is in District 2B

Ballotpedia – Story County, IA

District Judges:

Thomas Bice, James Ellefson, Timothy Finn, John Haney, James McGlynn, Gary McMinimee, Michael Moon, Steven Oeth, William Ostlund ,Kurt Stoebe.

I pick Michael Moon – follow this link: Link

Summary of chapter for class: Chapter 8 for the Iowa State Bar Association – Media Guide

What it is about? Expanded media coverage:

  • The normal rule for cameras in the court room are described in chapter 25 of the Iowa Court Rules
  • 2014 there was an amendment which changed what type of electronics reporters may use in the courtroom
  • The court has full authority to hold court however it see’s fit to have justice served for both sides
  • Iowa is one of the first states to allow extended media coverage or EMC in the courtroom.
  • All 50 states now allow some form of EMC
  • The state has been divided into 14 different regions
  • For each region there are regional coordinators to free up requests for media coverage so a clear and concise message is coming out of the court room from then on is dispersed to various news outlets (at least at their disposal).
  • Court rules the amount of equipment allowed in the court room – up to their decision at the time
  • This is mostly happening for trial hearings – smaller trials usually have no such rules or the interest of the news outlet is not alive and well.


For more than 30 years, cameras and other pieces of equipment have been allowed in the court room but it wasn’t until recent that an amendment to chapter 25 of the Iowa Court Rules came to life. In 2014, it was officially set in stone for extended media coverage or EMC in trial hearings only upon approval from the court itself. From there, 14 different regions were created in Iowa to help clean up the approval process of having an EMC on regular trial hearings. A regional coordinator is in charge of each region and can approve/disapprove of an EMC faster than one centralized manager. This is an additive to the ongoing process of judicial reform for which Iowa has led the charge of one of the first states to adopt these policies.


Iowa Supreme Court Opinion Archives – March 19th, 2010

Iowa Supreme Court Attorney Disciplinary Board


Jesse M. Marzen

Appeal and cross-appeal from grievance commission decision finding respondent disclosed privileged information, but did not engage in a sexual relationship with a client. LICENSE SUSPENDED.

Link for this opinion

“The unequal balance of power in the attorney-client relationship, rooted in the attorney’s special skill and knowledge on the one hand and the client’s potential vulnerability on the other, may enable the lawyer to dominate and take unfair advantage. When a lawyer uses this power to initiate a sexual relationship with a client, actual harm to the client, and the client’s interest, may result. Such overreaching by an attorney is harmful in any legal representation but presents an even greater danger to the client seeking advice in times of personal crisis . . . .” PAGE 19

IV. Conclusion.

We suspend Marzen’s license to practice law with no possibility of reinstatement for a period not less than six months from the date of the filing of this opinion. This suspension applies to all facets of the practice of law pursuant to Iowa Court Rule 35.12(3). Upon application for reinstatement, Marzen shall have the burden to prove he has not practiced during the period of suspension and that he meets all the requirements of reinstatement provided in Iowa Court Rule 35.13. Costs of the action are taxed against Marzen in accordance with Iowa Court Rule 35.26(1).




Both parties seek further review of the financial provisions in their

dissolution decree. Pursuant to our discretion to consider issues raised on further review, we let the court of appeals decision stand with respect to the property distribution, child support, life insurance, and appellate attorney fees. We do find, however, that the spousal support award by the district court was too low and the spousal support award as modified by the court of appeals was too high. Accordingly, we modify the spousal support award in the dissolution decree as set forth in this opinion.


State of Iowa vs. Mark Becker

Allison, Butler County Court June 2009

ESPY’s – Watching documentary


“What does it all mean?” Video shown in class

Transitioning into what happened to Mark?