Denise Wager | November 11, 2019
Alyssa McClure ’19 J.D. recently won an appeal in a habeas corpus case that she argued before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit through Notre Dame Law School’s Seventh Circuit Practice Externship.
While a third-year law student, McClure was the primary author of the briefs and presented oral argument in the case Portee v. United States. She represented Daniel Portee, who was challenging his enhanced 15-year mandatory-minimum sentence for possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. McClure argued that the district court had not satisfied the criteria needed to impose the enhanced sentence. The Seventh Circuit agreed and reversed the decision in an opinion issued October 18.
“Being part of the Seventh Circuit team was the most rewarding experience of my law school career. I learned an incredible amount about advocacy and creative lawyering through researching, briefing, and preparing to argue a federal habeas case,” said McClure, who is now a federal law clerk in North Carolina. “I would not have been successful without the support of my fellow team members, Professor Bob Palmer, Professor Bob Jones, and the professors and students who helped moot me.”
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