Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals - Published Opinions

Friday, May 21, 2021

Taylor: Upholding Electronic Search Condition of Supervised Release for Non-Sex Offender

In United States v. Taylor, No. 20-10742 (May 21, 2021) (Jill Pryor, Luck, Tjoflat) (per curiam), the Court upheld the defendant’s terms of supervised release and his sentence for his felon-in-possession offense.

The defendant argued that the district court erred by imposing an electronic search condition of supervised release to deter him from future offenses.  Although typically reserved for sex offenders, the Court held that such a search condition may also be imposed on other offenders, such as those who frequently recidivate or violate their supervised release in a way that poses a danger to others.  In this case, there was no abuse of discretion because, although the defendant was not a sex offender and the condition did not directly relate to his firearm offense, it was reasonably related to his history as a recidivist.  The condition was not overbroad because it allowed access only at a reasonable time when there was reasonable suspicion.  And the specific areas to be searched were not vague because those areas were enumerated in the condition.

The Court also held that the 30-month sentence, a 3-month upward variance, was not substantively unreasonable.