Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals - Published Opinions

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Love: Invited Supervised Release Error

In U.S. v. Love, No. 05-11141 (May 18, 2006), the Court held that at sentencing the defendant "invited" any error in his sentence, and was therefore barred from challenging on appeal the legality of a five-year term imposed for his conviction of contempt, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 401(3).
The defendant was held in contempt for violating a temporary restraining order. At sentencing, the defendant did not object to the PSI determination that the court could impose a term of supervised release of up to five years. Defense counsel repeatedly requested that the court impose a sentence of time served, followed by a term of supervised release. The Court sentenced Love to 45 days’ incarceration followed by five years of supervised release.
On appeal, the defendant argued that because his contempt conviction did not qualify as a "felony or misdemeanor" under the supervised release statute, 18 U.S.C. § 3583(a), or, alternatively, because his contempt conviction counted as a misdemeanor, and therefore was punishable by only up to one year of supervised release, the five year term of supervised release was invalid.
The Court declined to reach the merits of Love’s arguments, finding that any error was "invited" at sentencing, when defense counsel repeatedly agreed to a term of supervised release.