United States v. Propst, No. 19-2377 (7th Cir. 2020)Annotate this Case
Propst made multiple harassing, obscene, and threatening telephone calls, often while under the influence of methamphetamine, beginning in 1999. In recent years, Propst’s telephone calls while he was working as an over-the-road truck driver resulted in a multiple-jurisdiction investigation. On June 12, 2018, Propst went on a calling spree, during which he claimed he was sexually assaulting children. Propst ultimately pleaded guilty to two counts of making interstate telephone calls in which he threatened personal injury, 18 U.S.C. 875(c) and to threatening or harassing interstate communications, 47 U.S.C. 223(a)(1)(C).
The government’s sentencing memorandum counted “41 state and federal” convictions. The Sentencing Guidelines range was 24-30 months' imprisonment. Under the plea agreement, the parties could argue for any sentence between 60-120 months. At sentencing, the court stated that the parties agreed that the Guidelines range understated the seriousness of the offense and was inadequate and did not capture the “calls to a mother and to childcare centers, which were more than just nuisances.” The court reviewed the goals of the sentence, the nature and circumstances of the offenses, and Propst’s history and character. The Seventh Circuit affirmed his sentence to 84 months’ imprisonment. Propst did not show that the district court improperly relied on inaccurate information about his past convictions; the court adequately explained its reasons for the 84-month sentence.