United States v. Martin, No. 12-3154 (7th Cir. 2013)Annotate this Case
Martin made images and videos depicting child pornography available on a file-sharing network. A search of his home uncovered hundreds more images and several videos of child pornography on computers. Martin pleaded guilty to possessing child pornography, 18 U.S.C. 2252(a)(4)(B). The presentence report calculated that sentencing guidelines yielded a range of 121 to 151 months. Given the ten-year statutory maximum sentence, Martin’s effective guidelines range was 120 months, U.S.S.G. 5G1.1(c)(1). The PSR noted that Martin had been diagnosed with major depressive disorder, dysthymia, alcohol and marijuana dependency, and polysubstance abuse, and had received a “possible, but doubtful” diagnosis of bipolar disorder. Martin had engaged in self-mutilation, had been hospitalized for mood disorders, and had attempted suicide, but was not receiving medication or treatment because he could not afford it. Martin did not object to the calculations, but argued that: his personal characteristics indicate a low likelihood of recidivism; the guidelines produce excessive sentences in possession cases: his contribution to the total harm of child pornography was negligible; and a shorter sentence was necessary to avoid disparities. The district court sentenced Martin to 120 months’ imprisonment, explaining that child-pornography offenders “are not rational thinkers in the first place.” The Seventh Circuit remanded for resentencing, because the court failed to address arguments concerning Martin’s personal characteristics and the goals of sentencing.