United States District Court, W.D. Virginia, Abingdon Division
Ramseyer, Assistant United States Attorney, Abingdon,
Virginia, for United States; James David Cnockaert, Pro Se
OPINION AND ORDER
P. Jones United States District Judge.
defendant has requested early termination of his current term
of supervised release. I will grant his motion.
defendant, James Edward Cnockaert, was sentenced on March 26,
2010, to 36 months imprisonment by the United States District
Court for the District of Montana for possession of child
pornography, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 2252A(a)(5)(B).
In addition to the sentence of incarceration, a term of
supervised release of 10 years was imposed. After the
defendant's release from prison, his supervision was
transferred to this district pursuant to 18 U.S.C. §
3605. As of December 21, 2017, he will have served five years
of supervision by this court. The defendant has now moved to
terminate his supervision. See 18 U.S.C. §
3583(e)(1) (permitting court to terminate supervision at any
time after the expiration of one year, if the court is
satisfied that such action is warranted by the conduct of the
defendant and the interest of justice). The court held a
hearing on the motion, at which time the defendant was
questioned under oath at length by the court and the
assistant United States attorney.
decision whether to terminate supervision under §
3583(e)(1) is within the discretion of the court. United
States v. Christy, No. 5:89-CR-9-1F, 2012 WL 441445, at
*1 (E.D. N.C. Feb. 10, 2012). The phrase “in the
interest of justice” in the statute gives the court
“latitude to consider a broad range of factors in
addition to an individual's behavior in considering
whether to terminate the supervised release period.”
United States v. Pregent, 190 F.3d 279, 282-83 (4th
defendant is 63 years old. Before his imprisonment, he had a
long career as a sports reporter and editor. He has written
three books on college sports. Other than his present
conviction, he has no prior criminal convictions or arrests.
Once divorced, he has been married to his present wife since
1994. He is presently employed by an environmental services
company and his immediate supervisor as well as the manger of
the company testified at the hearing before this court that
he has been an outstanding employee. According to the
Presentence Investigation Report (“PSR”)
submitted at his 2010 sentencing, both his present and former
wife speak highly of him, as do his three grown daughters
from his former marriage. He has not violated any of the
conditions of his supervised release and had no rule
infractions during his prison incarceration. As a condition
of his supervision, the defendant has successfully completed
a sex offender treatment program.
was originally charged with both receipt and possession of
child pornography and pleaded not guilty to both charges, but
was convicted at a bench trial. Later, the trial judge set
aside the receipt conviction. At the hearing before this court,
the defendant admitted that he had in fact viewed child
pornography on a computer.
United States opposes termination of supervision, although it
has not pointed to any particularized risk of such
supervision should seek to protect the public from further
crimes of the defendant, it also “fulfills
rehabilitative ends, distinct from those served by
incarceration.” United States v. Johnson, 529
U.S. 53, 59 (2000); see U.S. Sentencing Guidelines
Manual § 7A1.4 (U.S. Sentencing Comm'n 2016)
(“[T]he [U.S. Sentencing] Commission determined that
the purpose of supervision for probation and supervised
release should focus on the integration of the violator into
the community, while providing the supervision designed to
limit further criminal conduct.”).
that the defendant's sentence, including his supervised
release, has produced appropriate deterrence to future
criminal conduct, as well as substantial rehabilitation.
While no one can be certain that the defendant may not again
violate the law, even if he serves his full ten-year term of
supervision, I find him to be remorseful of his serious crime
and now dedicated to living a lawful life. I do not believe
that further supervision will enhance the deterrence or
rehabilitation already produced.
it ORDERED that the defendant's
supervision is terminated effective as of December 21, 2017.
 The receipt count carried a mandatory
minimum sentence of imprisonment of five years, 18 U.S.C.
§ 2252A(b)(1), while the possession count carried no
mandatory sentence, 18 U.S.C. § 2252A(b)(2). The
defendant was sentenced below the guideline range of
incarceration. See PSR ¶ 84 (guideline range calculated
at 51 to 63 months). There was a required ...