U.S. v. Blake

Decision Date10 July 1996
Docket Number96-30061,96-30059,Nos. 96-30057,s. 96-30057
Citation88 F.3d 824
Parties97 Cal. Daily Op. Serv. 5139, 96 Daily Journal D.A.R. 8284 UNITED STATES of America, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. Gary Arthur BLAKE, Defendant-Appellant. UNITED STATES of America, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. Martin Hobart STANWOOD, Defendant-Appellant. UNITED STATES of America, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. John Nacaro GALLINGER, Defendant-Appellant. UNITED STATES of America, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. Timothy Allen YATES, Defendant-Appellant. UNITED STATES of America, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. Dell Kenneth FOSTER, Defendant-Appellant. UNITED STATES of America, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. John Joseph SPODEN, Defendant-Appellant. to 96-30063, 96-30067.
CourtU.S. Court of Appeals — Ninth Circuit

Stephen R. Sady, Chief Deputy Federal Public Defender, Wendy R. Willis, Assistant Federal Public Defender, Portland, Oregon, for defendants-appellants.

Jonathan S. Haub, Assistant United States Attorney, Portland, Oregon, for plaintiff-appellee.

Appeals from the United States District Court for the District of Oregon, Robert E. Jones, District Judge, Presiding. D.C. Nos. CR-92-00059-1-REJ, CR-91-00279-1-REJ, CR-93-00098-1-OMP, CR-90-00198-1-JAR,CR-91-00280-1-JAR, CR-91-60138-MRH.

Before: GOODWIN and SCHROEDER, Circuit Judges, and LEGGE, District Judge. *

GOODWIN, Circuit Judge:

This appeal raises one question: when a criminal defendant's sentence of imprisonment is reduced below the time he has already served, due to a retroactive change in the sentencing guidelines, does his supervised release obligation commence on the date of his actual release or on the date he should have been released according to his revised sentence?

We conclude that, while the statutory scheme is not crystal clear, the supervised release portion of the sentence begins on the date a prisoner's term of imprisonment expires, whether or not he is released on that date. The appellants' terms of supervised release began on the dates appellants should have been released, rather than on the dates of their actual release.

I. Sentencing Court

Appellants in these consolidated cases were each convicted for growing marijuana in violation of 21 U.S.C. § 841(a) and sentenced to a term of imprisonment plus a statutory three years of supervised release. In November, 1995, each received a reduction in his custodial sentence by reason of a retroactive amendment to the sentencing guidelines which affected the manner of calculating the quantity of marijuana for sentencing purposes. Each had already spent more time in prison than required by the modified sentence.

The government nonetheless used each prisoner's actual release date as the starting date for measuring the duration of the three years of supervised release. Appellants moved for clarification of their sentences, asking the court to set the starting times for their terms of supervised release on the dates their imprisonments should have ended under the new sentences. The district court, after reviewing the stated purposes of both custody and supervised release, agreed with the government that supervised release must be measured from the actual release dates. The trial court's reading of the controlling statutes is understandable.

II. Statutory Requirement

"The term of supervised release commences on the day the person is released from imprisonment and runs concurrently with any Federal, State, or local term of probation or parole...." 18 U.S.C. § 3624(e). Turning to the subsection of the same statute, we find, inter alia: "A prisoner shall be released by the Bureau of Prisons on the date of the expiration of the prisoner's term of imprisonment ...." § 3624(a).

The government argues that Section...

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12 cases
  • Cozine v. Crabtree
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — District of Oregon
    • July 2, 1998
    ... ... The judgment of conviction in that case expressly provides that: ...         THIS SENTENCE CONCURRENT W/US DISTRICT COURT NORTHERN DISTRICT OF ALABAMA # 93-H-065-NE. COURT RECOMMENDS DEFENDANT SERVE FEDERAL SENTENCE IN CALIFORNIA ... See United States v. Blake, 88 F.3d 824 (9th Cir.1996) (when sentence of imprisonment is subsequently reduced below length of time inmate has already served, term of ... ...
  • Ford v. Caulfield
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — District of Columbia
    • September 10, 2009
    ... ... See Johnson, 529 U.S. at 56, 120 S.Ct. 1114 (citing United States v. Blake ... ...
  • Johnson v. U.S.
    • United States
    • U.S. Court of Appeals — Sixth Circuit
    • January 21, 1999
    ... ... In United States v. Blake, 88 F.3d 824 (9th Cir.1996), the Ninth Circuit held that the defendants' terms of supervised release commenced on the day they should have been ... ...
  • U.S. v. Joseph
    • United States
    • U.S. Court of Appeals — First Circuit
    • December 4, 1996
    ... ...         In so arguing, Joseph relies on the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit's decision in United States v. Blake, 88 F.3d 824 (9th Cir.1996). In Blake, the defendants' custodial sentences were reduced below the time they had already served in prison by the ... These distinctions, however, do not seem to us dispositive. The bottom line is that both cases deal with changes yielding the same result: a reduction in the term of imprisonment beyond the time ... ...
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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