United States v. Taylor, No. 18-1545 (7th Cir. 2018)Annotate this Case
Taylor pleaded guilty to one count of possession of child pornography, 18 U.S.C. 2252(a)(4)(B). His plea agreement contemplated an offense level of 31, which reflected a two-level reduction because Taylor had not sought to distribute child pornography. In preparing the PSR, the probation officer concluded that this two-level reduction was not available under the Guidelines. At the sentencing hearing, the parties stated that they had no objection to the PSR. The district court accepted the probation officer’s offense level calculation of 33 and sentenced Taylor to 135 months’ imprisonment, the low end of the guidelines range for a level 33 offense. On appeal, Taylor argued that the government was bound to advocate for a sentence within the lower range contemplated by the plea agreement and that its advocacy for a within-Guidelines sentence based on the corrected calculation constitutes a breach of the plea agreement. The Seventh Circuit affirmed. Under the plea agreement, the government was bound to advocate for a within-Guidelines sentence; it fulfilled that obligation.