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United States v. Cameron

United States Court of Appeals, First Circuit

August 22, 2016

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Appellee,
v.
JAMES M. CAMERON, Defendant, Appellee.

         APPEAL FROM THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE DISTRICT OF MAINE, [Hon. John A. Woodcock, U.S. District Judge]

          Peter Charles Horstmann, for appellant.

          Renée M. Bunker, Assistant United States Attorney, with whom Thomas E. Delahanty II, United States Attorney, was on brief for appellee.

          Before Torruella, Lynch, and Thompson, Circuit Judges.

          TORRUELLA, Circuit Judge.

         Following a bench trial in the U.S. District Court for the District of Maine, Defendant- Appellant James M. Cameron ("Cameron") was convicted on thirteen counts of child pornography. Cameron appealed for the first time, and this Court vacated Cameron's conviction on six of those counts, upheld his conviction on the remaining seven counts, and remanded the case to the district court. United States v. Cameron, 699 F.3d 621, 653 (1st Cir. 2012).

         The day after we issued our decision, Cameron fled the state of Maine in violation of a court order. He was subsequently apprehended and pled guilty to one count of criminal contempt. The Government declined to seek a new trial on the six counts we vacated and moved for sentencing on the seven remaining child-pornography counts and the criminal-contempt count.

         After a hearing, the district court sentenced Cameron to 165 months' imprisonment for the child-pornography counts and twenty-four months for the contempt charge. Cameron now appeals from his sentence for the child-pornography counts. Cameron argues that the sentence was procedurally unreasonable because the district court did not adequately consider Cameron's disproportionate-sentence argument and treated certain factors in Cameron's history and characteristics inappropriately. Cameron also argues that the 165-month sentence creates an unwarranted sentence disparity with similar cases and was therefore substantively unreasonable.

         We affirm the district court's sentence.

         I. BACKGROUND

         A. Cameron's Conviction and Appeal

         On February 11, 2009, a federal grand jury indicted Cameron, then a prosecutor for the state of Maine, on sixteen counts of child pornography-related crimes.[1] After a bench trial, the district court found Cameron guilty on thirteen of the sixteen counts. The district court then sentenced Cameron to 192 months' imprisonment. Cameron appealed to this Court, and on November 14, 2012, this Court held that the district court erred when it admitted certain evidence in violation of Cameron's rights under the Confrontation Clause. Cameron, 699 F.3d at 649-51. We therefore vacated six counts of Cameron's conviction and remanded the case to the district court "for re-sentencing, or a new trial if the government wishes to so proceed." Id. at 626.

         B. Cameron Flees Maine

         The day after this Court issued its opinion upholding portions of Cameron's conviction, Cameron fled the state of Maine in violation of his release conditions. Cameron avoided detection for more than two weeks, and during that time, he attempted to cash two forged checks for $42, 000 and $32, 000. The district court found that Cameron "fled the jurisdiction with the specific intent to avoid the resentencing hearing that the First Circuit ordered."

         Cameron was eventually arrested in New Mexico, and on January 2, 2013, the Government charged Cameron with criminal contempt in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 401(3). Cameron pled guilty to the criminal contempt charge on February 19, 2013.

         C. The District Court Re-Sentences Cameron

         1. The District Court's Sentencing ...


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