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September 29, 2010

Seventh Circuit finds that sentencing speed kills procedural reasonableness

The Seventh Circuit has an interesting reasonableness ruling today in US v. Glosser, No. 08-4015 (7th Cir. Sept. 29, 2010) (available here), which gets started this way:

The government appeals from a 121-month sentence a defendant received for attempting to possess more than 500 grams of methamphetamine, arguing that the district court committed procedural error by announcing and promising that it would impose the mandatory minimum sentence during the change of plea hearing, before it knew the advisory guidelines range or had heard either party’s argument regarding the sentence. Although we recognize that the court’s references to the ten-year mandatory minimum stemmed from a desire to ensure the defendant understood the minimum time he faced (he had previously been incorrectly informed that he faced a statutory minimum of five years), we agree with the government that the premature announcement of sentence constitutes procedural error that requires we vacate the sentence and remand for further proceedings.

September 29, 2010 at 11:46 AM | Permalink

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Comments

The Government was foolish to appeal the 121 month sentence in this case. Technically, they are correct, but without getting the sentencing Judge disqualified from re-sentencing, it seems like a virtual certainty that he will impose the same 121 month sentence upon re-sentencing. All the prosecutors did by appealing the sentence on this procedural ground was elevate form over substance, waste money and piss off the Judge.

Posted by: Jim Gormley Gormley | Sep 29, 2010 6:23:44 PM

now this was just STUPID! so NOW it's against the rules to tell a defendant WHAT the absolute minimum time they can get. HECK this wasn't even done in front of a damn jury.

Posted by: rodsmith | Sep 30, 2010 1:46:00 AM

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