Eighth Circuit Grants Rehearing En Banc to Settle Intra-Circuit Split

by Ryan Koopmans | March 4, 2013

By Ryan Koopmans

Today, the Eighth Circuit ordered rehearing en banc in United States v. Bruguier and United States v. Rouillardtwo cases that were issued on the same day with opposite results.

We reported on Bruguier and Rouillard in December of last year. In both cases the defendants were convicted of “knowingly . . . engaging in a sexual act with another person if that other person is–(A) incapable of apprising the nature of the conduct; or (B) physically incapable of declining participation in, or communicating unwillingness to engage in, that sexual act.”  Both defendants argued that the “knowingly” requirement extends to subsections (A) and (B)—that is, the government must prove that the defendant knew the victim was mentally or physically impaired.  The government argued in both cases that the mens rea requirement doesn’t extend beyond the first clause.

A majority of the Bruguier panel agreed with the government.  The Rouillard panel agreed with the defendant.

The full 11-member court (plus Senior Judge Bright, who dissented in Bruguier) will hear oral argument on April 12 in St. Louis.



March 2024 Opinion Roundup

The Iowa Supreme Court entered opinions in ten cases during March 2024. These opinions are summarized below.

Iowa Supreme Court sends ‘stand your ground’ case back for new trial

Lasondra Johnson was tried for first-degree murder for the shooting death of Jada Young-Mills outside a Waterloo residence. Johnson argued she acted in self defense and the shooting was justified under Iowa’s “stand your ground” law that says a person is justified in the use of reasonable force in the belief that such …



On Brief: Iowa’s Appellate Blog is devoted to appellate litigation with a focus on the Iowa Supreme Court, the Iowa Court of Appeals, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit.


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