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United States v. Perry

United States District Court, N.D. Iowa, Central Division

February 4, 2014

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff,
v.
GEORGE LYNN PERRY, JR., Defendant.

ORDER FOR PRETRIAL DETENTION

JON STUART SCOLES, Chief Magistrate Judge.

On the 3rd day of February, 2014, this matter came on for hearing on the Government's request to have the Defendant detained prior to trial. The Government was represented by Assistant United States Attorney Dan Chatham. The Defendant appeared personally and was represented by his attorney, Raphael M. Scheetz.

I. RELEVANT FACTS AND PROCEEDINGS

On January 22, 2014, Defendant George Lynn Perry, Jr. was charged by Indictment (docket number 4) with conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance. At the arraignment on January 29, 2014, Defendant entered a plea of not guilty and trial was scheduled before Chief Judge Linda R. Reade on March 31, 2014.

Neither party offered any testimony at the time of hearing. Instead, the parties elected to rely on the information contained in the pretrial services report, and Defendant proffered that he would be able to live with his sister (who was in the courtroom) if released.

Defendant is 42 years old. He was born in Mason City, Iowa, and has lived there all of his life. Defendant was married during the 1990s, and no children were born to the marriage. Defendant has three children (ages 17, 16, and 15), however, from another relationship.

For the past ten years, Defendant has lived "off-and-on" with his sister in Mason City and could return to live with her if released. Defendant has been unemployed since the summer of 2012, when he worked as a landscaper. Since that time, he has done "odd jobs." Defendant told the pretrial services officer that he suffers from high blood pressure, which has been untreated. He also believes he has a kidney problem because he experiences pain while urinating. Six years ago, Defendant was treated briefly for depression, but the condition has gone untreated since then and he no longer believes he has "issues with depression."

Defendant described his use of marijuana since age 18 as "spotty" and said he smokes typically once a month. He last used marijuana on the day prior to his arrest. Defendant also advised the pretrial services officer that he used methamphetamine on a daily basis in his early 20s, but then quit. Defendant relapsed when his father died in April 2013, however, and has used methamphetamine once a month since then. He last used methamphetamine two weeks prior to his arrest.

Defendant has an extensive prior criminal record, starting in 1997 at age 25. Defendant's convictions include theft in the fourth degree, domestic abuse assault, theft in the second degree (three times), driving while suspended (eight times), possession of a controlled substance, possession of a controlled substance third or subsequent offense (twice), failure to affix a tax stamp, possession of pseudoephedrine (twice), interference with official acts (three times), possession of drug paraphernalia, unauthorized used of a credit card, driving while barred as an habitual offender (five times), and trespass. Additional related charges incurred on the same dates were dismissed, apparently as part of a plea agreement. Defendant initially received suspended prison terms and probation for theft in the second degree, possession of a controlled substance third or subsequent offense, failure to affix a tax stamp, and possession of pseudoephedrine. Defendant's probation was revoked and he was sent to prison in the summer of 2004. Also at that time, Defendant was sentenced to prison for an additional charge of possession of pseudoephedrine. That is, Defendant was serving five separate five-year prison terms. Defendant was paroled on May 19, 2005, but was subsequently placed in the violators program on October 27, 2005.

In 2009, Defendant received a suspended five-year prison term for unauthorized use of a credit card. He was subsequently found in contempt on two occasions, however, and his probation was revoked in March 2012. Defendant was paroled in September 2012.

On November 4, 2013, Defendant was sentenced to two years in prison for driving while barred, five years in prison for theft in the second degree, and five years in prison for possession of a controlled substance third or subsequent offense. Defendant appealed, however, and was released after posting an appeal bond.

II. DISCUSSION

The release or detention of a defendant pending trial is governed by the Bail Reform Act of 1984, 18 U.S.C. ยง 3142. In United States v. Salerno, 481 U.S. 739 (1987), the United States Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of the Bail Reform Act of 1984, while noting that "[i]n our society liberty is the norm, and ...


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