For information on getting involved in HIV criminalization reform advocacy in Iowa, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Data from the GNP+ Global Criminalisation Scan
|Number of prosecutions||25|
|Number of convictions||15|
Iowa Code § 709C.1
2. For the purposes of this section:
3. Criminal transmission of the human immunodeficiency virus is a class "B" felony.
4. This section shall not be construed to require that an infection with the human immunodeficiency virus has occurred for a person to have committed criminal transmission of the human immunodeficiency virus.
5. It is an affirmative defense that the person exposed to the human immunodeficiency virus knew that the infected person had a positive human immunodeficiency virus status at the time of the action of exposure, knew that the action of exposure could result in transmission of the human immunodeficiency virus, and consented to the action of exposure with that knowledge.
A Class B felony shall be confined for no more than twenty-five years. Sex offender registration is also required.
In April 2009, a gay man, Nick Rhoades was sentenced to twenty-five years in prison after he failed to disclose his HIV status to a one-time sexual partner he met online. He was also required to register as a sex offender and undergo a sex offender treatment program. Following targeted advocacy of the sentencing judge, his sentence was later reduced to five years probation and mandatory sex offender registration.
Subsequently, Iowa's HIV-specific law, passed in 1998, was the focus of three investigative reports by journalist Lynda Waddington in the Iowa Independent. (Articles attached below)
Since then, advocates in Iowa have succeeded in persuading lawmakers to consider revisions to Iowa's statute (see above).
Meanwhile, Mr Rhoades' case and the case of another man, Donald Bogardus, are being readied for appeal at Iowa's Supreme Court (see 'HIV law is too severe given risks, critics say', below)
Although cases and prosecutions are well documented in Iowa, there has been some confusion regarding numbers of charges versus numbers of individuals charged.
Given that there are an estimated 1,828 people living with (diagnosed) HIV in Iowa (Source: Iowa Watch), prosecutions per capita of PLHIV are an estimated 13.68 per 1000, one of the highest in the world for any single jurisdiction.
Positive Justice Project. Ending & Defending Against HIV Criminalization, A Manual For Advocates: Vol 1 States and Federal Laws and Prosecutions. Center for HIV Law and Policy, New York. Fall 2010 (with additional laws and cases through December 2011).
Recent cases can be found at: Positive Justice Project. Prosecutions and Arrests for HIV Exposure in the United States, 2008–2012. Center for HIV Law and Policy, 2012.
Further cases and news can be found at: http://www.hivjustice.net/country/us/ia-iowa/