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United States v. Pruitt

United States District Court, C.D. Illinois, Springfield Division

August 28, 2014

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff,
v.
JERRAD A. PRUITT, Defendant.

OPINION

SUE E. MYERSCOUGH, District Judge.

Defendant Jerrad A. Pruitt requested early termination of his supervised release. See Letters (d/e 27, 28). The Government objected to the request. The U.S. Probation Office took no position.

Following a hearing on August 26, 2014, the Court denied the request. The Court now sets forth the reasons for denying Mr. Pruitt's request for early termination of supervised release.

I. BACKGROUND

In August 2006, an Information was filed charging Mr. Pruitt with conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance (cocaine) from at least June 2000 and continuing until at least October 2003. See d/e 1. Mr. Pruitt waived indictment and entered a plea of guilty pursuant to a plea agreement. See August 23, 2006 Minute Entry.

The Probation Office prepared a Presentence Investigation Report (PSR) (d/e 22). The PSR contains the details of the offense conduct. Essentially, Mr. Pruitt was part of a large conspiracy to distribute cocaine.

The PSR held Mr. Pruitt accountable for 5.9 kilograms of cocaine and 16.8 kilograms of marijuana. He had one prior drug conviction. Mr. Pruitt had a total offense level of 29 and a criminal history category of III, which resulted in a guideline range of 108 to 135 months. The mandatory minimum was 60 months. Mr. Pruitt was eligible for a term of supervised release of at least four years under the statute and four to five years pursuant to the Sentencing Guidelines.

At the May 2007 sentencing hearing, the Government recommended, and United States District Judge Jeanne Scott accepted, a downward departure based on Mr. Pruitt's substantial assistance. Judge Scott also noted that Mr. Pruitt's criminal history category was overrepresented and that his criminal record warranted a category of II. Judge Scott further recognized the defendant's voluntary withdrawal from the conspiracy three years prior to being charged (see U.S.S.G. ยง 5K2.0 ("Other Grounds for Departure"). Statement of Reasons for Imposing Sentence (d/e 21). Judge Scott sentenced Mr. Pruitt to 72 months' imprisonment and four years of supervised release. She did not impose a fine or restitution.

The conditions of Mr. Pruitt's supervised release included the standard conditions and the following special conditions:

1. The defendant shall refrain from any use of alcohol and shall not purchase, possess, use, distribute, or administer any controlled substance, or any paraphernalia related to any controlled substance, except as prescribed by a physician. He shall, at the direction of the Probation Office, participate in a program for substance abuse treatment including not more than six tests per month to determine whether he has used controlled substances and/or alcohol. He shall pay for these services as directed by the probation officer.
2. The defendant shall obtain and maintain employment.
3. If the defendant is unemployed after the first 60 days of supervision, or if unemployed for 60 days after termination or lay-off from employment, he shall perform at least 20 hours of community service work per week at the direction of and in the discretion of the U.S. Probation Office until gainfully employed.

Mr. Pruitt was released to a halfway house in April 2012 and began his term of supervised release on August 21, 2012. Mr. Pruitt's letters mistakenly refer to February 2012 as the date Mr. Pruitt began his term of supervised release.

On February 28, 2014, Mr. Pruitt wrote a letter to the Court asking for early termination of his supervised release. See d/e 27. Mr. Pruitt asserts that he wants to put his past mistakes behind him and start from a clean slate. Mr. Pruitt explains that in the years prior to his arrest, he had taken steps to successfully remove himself from all criminal activity. However, he recognized that he was responsible for the choices he made in the past and accepted his sentence. Mr. Pruitt claims that while serving his time in prison, he was a model inmate, going out into the community and volunteering. Mr. Pruitt asserts that upon his release, he found it easy to transition back into normal life. He is an engineer for a medical company, has bought a ...


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