Is There a Criminal-Transmission-of-HIV Law in Your State?
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Iowa's law does not require that the sexual partner at risk of transmission actually contract the virus, and prosecutors have even won cases where a condom was used.
That's what happened to Nick Rhoades. Though he and Adam Plendl used a condom when they had sex, and Plendl didn't contract HIV, Rhoades was arrested and charged with criminal transmission of HIV. He plead guilty on the advice of his lawyer and was sentenced to 25 years in prison. On Thursday, Rhoades' new lawyers appealed to the Iowa Supreme Court arguing that the conviction should be overturned because he had used a condom. "The law only applies to those who intend to expose others to HIV," said Christopher Clark, an attorney for the LGBT rights group Lambda Legal, Rhoades' new legal representation, in a statement posted on the organization's website.