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United States v. Monfre

July 1, 2009

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, PLAINTIFF,
v.
DAVID ALAN MONFRE, DEFENDANT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Donald G. Wilkerson United States Magistrate Judge

ORDER*fn1

Defendant David Alan Monfre (Monfre) is before the Court on the Government's Motion for Detention (Doc. 5). A hearing on the motion was held on June 26, 2009. For the reasons stated below, the Government's motion is DENIED.

FACTUAL SUMMARY

On June, 26 2009, Monfre appeared in court for an Initial Appearance and Arraignment. On that date a hearing was held on the issue of detention. Appearing for the United States was Assistant United States Attorney Nicole Gorovsky and appearing for Monfre was Carter Collins Law. The evidence proffered at the hearing indicated that Monfre was indicted by a federal grand jury on two counts of receipt of child pornography in violation of Title 18 United States Code Section 2252(a)(2), one count of Transportation of Child Pornography in violation of Title 18 United States Code Section 2252(a)(1) and (b)(1) and one criminal forfeiture count for computer equipment.

The evidence proffered demonstrated that Monfre has no criminal history, has been employed for eight years at the local water company as a dispatcher, has an Associate Degree from a local college, owns a home, is a long time resident of the area, and has a stable family life. The evidence further demonstrated that the conduct charged in the indictment occurred in 2007. Additionally, the Government presented evidence of online chats that occurred in 2007 and 2008, in which the party identified by the Government as Monfre stated that he had engaged in sexual activity with a nine-year old and that he would like to do it again.*fn2 Moreover, the evidence adduced at the hearing indicated that Monfre's computer had been seized on a warrant issued by this Court on February 2, 2009.

LEGAL STANDARD

BACKGROUND

The Bail Reform Act is the governing law as to release or detention of defendants before trial. 18 U.S.C. § 3141 et.seq. Under the act, the judicial officer shall order the defendant detained if no condition or combination of conditions will reasonably assure the appearance of the defendant and the safety of the community. 18 U.S.C. § 3142(e). Thus, a showing of either the defendant's likelihood to flee or dangerousness to others requires detention. Courts have operated on this assumption, and a number have made it explicit. See United States v. MontalvoMurillo, 495 U.S. 711, 713 (1990) (holding that detention is required for persons who are a flight risk or a danger to the community). The Supreme Court has held that Congress did not intend pretrial detention to be punitive. See United States v. Salerno, 481 U.S. 739, (1987).

The court must consider all reasonable, less-restrictive alternatives to detention. See 18 U.S.C. § 3142(e); United States v. Infelise, 934 F.2d 103, 105 (7th Cir. 1991) (remanding because defendants proposed electronic surveillance anklets rather than detention, and trial court failed to consider whether it was a reasonable alternative). The sections of the Bail Reform Act pertinent to the inquiry in the instant case are outlined below.

STANDARD OF PROOF

The statute specifies that a finding that no conditions will reasonably ensure the safety of any other person or the community must be supported by clear and convincing evidence. 18 U.S.C. § 3142(f).

FACTORS TO BE CONSIDERED

Section 3142(g) sets forth the factors for the judicial officer to consider in determining whether to release a defendant. These factors must be considered ...


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