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United States v. Birdtail

United States District Court, D. Montana, Great Falls Division

March 6, 2019

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff,
v.
JASON BIRDTAIL, JR., Defendant.

          FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

          JOHN JOHNSTON UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         I. Synopsis

         Defendant Jason Birdtail, Jr. (Birdtail) has been accused of violating the conditions of his supervised release. Birdtail admitted all of the alleged violations. Birdtail's supervised release should be revoked. Birdtail should be placed in custody for 8 months, with 14 months of supervised release to follow. Birdtail should serve the first 60 days of supervised release at Connections Corrections in Butte, Montana.

         II. Status

         Birdtail pleaded guilty to Assault Resulting in Serious Bodily Injury on February 9, 2015. (Doc. 30). The Court sentenced Birdtail to 33 months of custody, followed by 2 years of supervised release. (Doc. 43). Birdtail's current term of supervised release began on December 12, 2018. (Doc. 70 at 2).

         Petition

         The United States Probation Office filed an Amended Petition requesting that the Court revoke Birdtail's supervised release on February 15, 2019. (Doc. 70). The Petition alleged that Birdtail had violated the conditions of his supervised release: 1) by using marijuana; 2) by consuming alcohol on two separate occasions; 3) by failing to report for substance abuse testing; 4) by failing to report for substance abuse treatment; 5) by failing to a report contact with law enforcement; and 6) by committing another crime. United States District Brian M. Morris issued a warrant for Birdtail's arrest on February 15, 2019. (Doc. 71).

         Initial appearance

         Birdtail appeared before the undersigned for his initial appearance on March 5, 2019. Birdtail was represented by counsel. Birdtail stated that he had read the petition and that he understood the allegations. Birdtail waived his right to a preliminary hearing. The parties consented to proceed with the revocation hearing before the undersigned.

         Revocation hearing

         The Court conducted a revocation hearing on March 5, 2019. Birdtail admitted that he had violated the conditions of his supervised release: 1) by using marijuana; 2) by consuming alcohol on two separate occasions; 3) by failing to report for substance abuse testing; 4) by failing to report for substance abuse treatment; 5) by failing to a report contact with law enforcement; and 6) by committing another crime. The violations are serious and warrant revocation of Birdtail's supervised release.

         Birdtail's violations are Grade C violations. Birdtail's criminal history category is II. Birdtail's underlying offense is a Class C felony. Birdtail could be incarcerated for up to 24 months. He could be ordered to remain on supervised release for up to 25 months, less any custody time imposed. The United States Sentencing Guidelines call for a term of custody of 4 to 10 months.

         III. Analysis

         Birdtail's supervised release should be revoked. Birdtail should be incarcerated for 8 months, with 14 months of supervised release to follow. Birdtail should serve the first 60 days of supervised release at Connections Corrections in Butte, ...


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