Judge Removed From Case of South Dakota Student Charged With Knowingly Exposing Others to HIV
Circuit Judge Jon Erickson has been removed from the case of Nikko Briteramos, an 18-year-old SiTanka Huron University student who has been charged with knowingly exposing a woman to HIV, the AP/Aberdeen American News reports. Circuit Judge Rodney Steele removed Erickson from the case and appointed Circuit Judge Tim Dallas Tucker to handle the trial, which is slated to begin July 24. Briteramos had requested a new judge last week, stating that he "didn't think he could get a fair trial" if Erickson presided over the case. Although the request did not say why Briteramos felt he would not receive a fair trial, the AP/Aberdeen American News reports that Erickson "may have fostered some ill will" by refusing to release Briteramos unless Briteramos posted $10,000 cash bond and by refusing to allow him to live with his godmother in Evanston, Ill. Briteramos is the first person to be prosecuted under a two-year-old South Dakota law that makes it a crime for an individual to knowingly expose another person to HIV (Kafka, AP/Aberdeen American News, 6/12). Briteramos has been indicted on three counts of HIV exposure, but he pled innocent to the charges in May. Briteramos could be sentenced to up to 45 years in prison if found guilty on all three counts (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 5/3).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.