United States v. Burrows

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Secret Service agents used a peer‐to‐peer sharing network to download eight images of child pornography from a computer using an internet protocol address assigned to Burrows’s home, then executed a search warrant. A forensic search of a computer at the residence revealed files received through the peer‐to‐peer sharing program, including videos depicting sexually explicit content of females as young as six years old. Burrows waived his Miranda rights and stated that before deleting his collection 10 days earlier, he had 20-30 movies and several thousand images of child pornography on his computer. Burrows unsuccessfully moved to dismiss the indictment, arguing 18 U.S.C. 2252A(a)(2)(A) is unconstitutionally vague. Burrows entered a conditional guilty plea. The court concluded that Burrows’s Guidelines range was 121–155 months’ imprisonment. The court examined the 18 U.S.C. 3553(a) factors, stating that it believed Burrows, age 33, posed a “greater risk to recidivate than other similarly situated individuals” based on his “juvenile history” and “pattern of violent outbursts” but also addressed mitigating factors, including abuse Burrows suffered as a child, and imposed a 121‐month sentence. The Seventh Circuit affirmed, rejecting an argument that section 2252A “is unconstitutionally vague because it does not distinguish receiving child pornography from possessing it, which does not impose a mandatory minimum sentence.” The court noted that one cannot receive child pornography without possessing it but one can possess child pornography without receiving it View "United States v. Burrows" on Justia Law

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