Thursday, August 24, 2006

Sentence Vacated in Part Because of Conflict Between Oral Pronouncement and Written Judgment

United States v. Bigelow, No. 05-20539 (5th Cir. Aug. 23, 2006)

The district court only imposed one special condition of supervised release when it orally pronounced the sentence at the sentencing hearing. The written judgment, however, included two special conditions of release that were not part of the oral pronoucement and one special condition that was broader than the one mentioned at the sentencing hearing. The court of appeals held that all three of the differences were conflicts, not ambiguities, and vacated the sentence in part and remanded with instructions to conform the written judgment to the oral pronouncement.

Although Bigelow doesn't appear break any new ground, it does serve as a reminder to carefully review the written judgment to make sure that it doesn't add anything that wasn't part of the oral pronouncement of sentence.


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