United States v. Young, No. 17-3494 (7th Cir. 2018)Annotate this Case
Young enlisted in the Army in 1977. During a 1978 training exercise, he suffered a back injury when his jeep crashed. Young later took part in a parachute training exercise. Years later, he claimed that he was traumatized when he witnessed a fellow soldier’s death in the jump. After his 1981 discharge, Young worked in various manufacturing positions. After denying having any medical or mental health conditions, Young enlisted in the Wisconsin Army National Guard. In 1990, Young first sought VA compensation for his back injuries; he later claimed Post‐Traumatic Stress Disorder. He was eventually found to be unemployable, was assigned a combined 100% compensation rate, and obtained additional compensation, to adapt his house to accommodate his allegedly increasing disability. Young pleaded guilty to wire fraud, 18 U.S.C. 1343, for defrauding the VA regarding the extent of his injuries. The district court sentenced Young to 21 months in prison, in the middle of the Sentencing Guideline range calculated based on the loss amount stipulated by the parties--$201,521.41. The Seventh Circuit affirmed. Young waived any objection to the loss amount. This was not merely a forfeiture—an inadvertent failure to raise an issue—but an intentional waiver that was part of a broad compromise of potentially disputed sentencing issues.