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United States v. Cook

May 19, 2003

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,
v.
SCOTT COOK, APPELLANT



On Appeal from the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania (D.C. Criminal No. 88-cr-00223-1) District Judge: Honorable Lowell A. Reed, Jr.

Before: Becker, Chief Judge,*fn1 Barry, and BRIGHT,*fn2 Circuit Judges.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Bright, Circuit Judge.

PRECEDENTIAL

Submitted under Third Circuit LAR 34.1(a) April 8, 2003

OPINION OF THE COURT

Scott Cook pled guilty to possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine, in violation of 21 U.S.C. § 841, use of a firearm in connection with a drug trafficking offense, in violation of 21 U.S.C. § 924(c), and possession of a destructive device, in violation of 26 U.S.C. § 5861(d). On November 7, 1988, the District Court sentenced Cook to a total of fifteen years imprisonment, consisting of a term of five years imprisonment on each count to run consecutively. Cook also received a five-year period of supervised release.

Cook's imprisonment ran from July 7, 1988 until August 18, 1994, when he was released to a halfway house. Cook obtained release from the halfway house on February 14, 1995, and was placed on parole. The U.S. Parole Commission terminated Cook's parole on July 22, 2000. That same month, according to the Probation Department, Cook's five-year period of supervised release began.

In December 2001, Cook's probation officer charged him with violating his supervised release based on conduct occurring during the summer and fall of 2001. At a violation hearing on February 25, 2002, the District Court rejected Cook's argument that under the terms of 18 U.S.C. § 3624(e) his five-year supervised release period should have commenced on February 14, 1995, the day he was released from prison. *fn3 The Court then found that Cook violated his supervised release, revoked the release, and sentenced Cook to one year of supervised release, with a condition of three months home confinement with release for work and drug rehabilitation at an outpatient clinic.

Cook appeals the District Court's decision. We reverse and remand with instructions to vacate the District Court's order revoking Cook's supervised release and to dismiss the revocation petition with prejudice.

I. BACKGROUND

This case presents what is called a "window case." Cook's offense occurred after the effective date of the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1986 ("ADAA"), 21 U.S.C. § 841(b)(1)(C), which mandates supervised release for drug trafficking offenses, and before the effective date of the Sentencing Reform Act of 1984 ("SRA"), 18 U.S.C. § 3551 et seq., which abolished probation and imposed a system of supervised release for all federal crimes. Scott Cook's offense concluded on March 6, 1987. The ADAA went into effect on October 27, 1986, and the SRA went into effect on November 1, 1987.

Cook pled guilty on September 26, 1988. As noted, Cook obtained release on August 18, 1994 from prison to a halfway house, and then was paroled from February 14, 1995 through July 22, 2000. The Probation Department and the government calculated that Cook's term of five years supervised release began on July 22, 2000, *fn4 the date on which he completed his parole.

On September 27, 2000, Cook filed a motion to vacate or correct his sentence under 28 U.S.C. § 2255. Cook argued that his five-year period of supervised release should have begun to run from the date of his release from the halfway house on February 14, 1995, and ended in the year 2000 prior to his alleged violation of supervised release. He filed essentially the same motion again on November 21, 2000. The District Court denied both motions. Cook did not appeal these decisions.

On December 5, 2001, Cook's probation officer filed a notice of supervised release violations from the summer and fall of 2001. After a hearing on February 25, 2001, the District Court revoked supervised release and sentenced Cook to one year ...


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