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United States v. Mathis-Gardner

United States Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit

April 21, 2015

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, APPELLEE
v.
DARLENE MATHIS-GARDNER, APPELLANT

Argued: March 6, 2015.

Appeal from the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. (No. 1:11-cr-00100).

A.J. Kramer, Federal Public Defender, argued the cause and filed the briefs for appellant. Michelle M. Peterson, Assistant Federal Public Defender, entered an appearance.

Nickolai G. Levin, Attorney, U.S. Department of Justice, argued the cause for appellee. With him on the briefs were William J. Baer, Assistant U.S. Attorney, and James J. Fredricks, Attorney. Adam D. Chandler, Attorney, entered an appearance.

Before: BROWN, SRINIVASAN and WILKINS, Circuit Judges.

OPINION

Wilkins, Circuit Judge :

The question before the Court is whether and to what extent a district court must explain its decision to deny a motion to terminate supervised release. We conclude that while a district court is required to consider certain factors before granting or denying a motion to terminate supervised release, there is no requirement that the district court explain its decision to deny such a motion so long as the court's

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reasoning is discernible from the record. In the present case, however, we cannot discern the District Court's reasoning from the record. We therefore vacate the District Court's judgment and remand for reconsideration with adequate explanation.

I.

In April of 2011, Darlene Mathis-Gardner pleaded guilty to charges of conspiracy to defraud the United States and making false claims against the United States. The charges were related to the falsification of information regarding the performance of government contracts. She was sentenced to concurrent eighteen-month terms of imprisonment and concurrent three-year terms of supervised release and ordered to perform community service and to pay restitution.

Mathis-Gardner served her time without incident and began her term of supervised release on December 31, 2012. On February 25, 2014, Mathis-Gardner filed a motion for early termination of her supervised release pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 3583(e). The Government supported her motion. On April 23, 2014, the District Court denied the motion in a minute order that stated, in its entirety, " It is hereby ordered that defendant's motion is DENIED."

Mathis-Gardner filed a timely ...


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