United States v. Rudd

Summarized by:

  • Court: 9th Circuit Court of Appeals Archives
  • Area(s) of Law: Sentencing
  • Date Filed: 11-23-2011
  • Case #: 10-50254
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Circuit Judge Wardlaw for the Court; Circuit Judge Berzon and Senior District Judge Whyte
  • Full Text Opinion

A sentencing judge commits procedural error when she imposes a 2000 foot residency condition, not otherwise found in the plea agreement, when the reason is not apparent from the record or the judge fails to articulate why the condition is appropriate.

The Bangladesh National Police found evidence that Rudd was having sexual contact with "boys of primary school-age" while he was working for the United States Agency for International Development. Rudd entered into a plea agreement with the United States, pleading guilty to illicit sexual conduct in foreign places. Rudd reserved his right to appeal any nonlisted special condition imposed by the court. At the recomendation of a Probation Officer, the sentencing judge imposed a condition not found in the plea agreement, which prohibited Rudd from living within 2000 feet of school yards and places used primarily by minors. On appeal, the Ninth Circuit reviews the sentence for abuse of discreation. The Court stated that judges have a duty to give a reasoned decision for each condition imposed, when such reason is not apparent from the record. The district court failed to explain why the stricter condition should be imposed, especially since the judge had the discreation to impose either a greater or lesser distance. VACATED and REMANDED for resentencing.

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