Submitted: February 29, 2016
from United States District Court for the Western District of
Arkansas - Texarkana
SMITH, BENTON, and KELLY, Circuit Judges.
Gauld pleaded guilty to receiving child pornography, a
violation of 18 U.S.C. § 2252(a)(2). In the plea
agreement, Gauld admitted that he was previously adjudicated
guilty as a juvenile of a sexual offense involving a minor.
The district court held that Gauld's juvenile
adjudication qualifies as a "prior conviction"
under 18 U.S.C. § 2252(b)(1) and sentenced him in
accordance with the statutory range. The district court also
imposed ten years of supervised release and banned Gauld from
using or possessing a computer as a special condition of
supervised release. Gauld appeals (1) the district
court's treatment of his juvenile adjudication as a prior
conviction and (2) the computer ban. We affirm.
created a profile on a photo-sharing website under the screen
name "lovesboys81." He posted sexually explicit
pictures of young boys and made lewd comments on the pictures
that he posted. Gauld also admitted to downloading child
pornography. A search of Gauld's laptop and cell phone
uncovered 921 images and 66 videos depicting child
pornography. He told law enforcement that he last had sexual
contact with a minor in 1997 and that he used child
pornography as a means to control his impulses.
federal grand jury charged Gauld in a five-count indictment.
He pleaded guilty to one count of receiving child
pornography, and, as part of the plea agreement, the
remaining counts were dismissed at sentencing. As a juvenile,
Gauld had been adjudicated "delinquent" of a sexual
offense involving a seven-year-old. Gauld's presentence
investigation report (PSR) calculated his total offense level
as 34 and his criminal history category as I. The resulting
Guidelines range would have been 151 to 188 months'
imprisonment. But the PSR noted that his prior juvenile
adjudication brought him under 18 U.S.C. §
2252(b)(1)'s statutory range. Because the mandatory
minimum sentence under § 2252(b)(1) is 15 years, the PSR
calculated Gauld's Guidelines range as 180 to 188
objected to the PSR's determination that his juvenile
adjudication qualifies as a prior conviction under §
2252(b)(1). The district court held that it was bound by our
decision in United States v. Woodard, 694 F.3d 950
(8th Cir. 2012). Accordingly, it sentenced Gauld to 180
months' imprisonment, the minimum under §
2252(b)(1). The district court also imposed ten years of
supervised release with several special conditions. Gauld did
not raise any objections to the special conditions at
sentencing. Now, Gauld objects to the following special
condition: "The defendant shall not possess or use a
computer, nor any other means of internet access."
argues that the district court erred by (1) holding that his
juvenile adjudication qualifies as a prior conviction under
18 U.S.C. § 2252(b)(1), and (2) imposing the computer
ban. We review the district court's interpretation of 18
U.S.C. § 2252(b)(1) de novo. See United States v.
Smith, 656 F.3d 821, 826 (8th Cir. 2011). Where, as
here, a defendant fails to timely object to a special
condition, we review the imposition of the special condition
for plain error. See United States v. Ristine, 335
F.3d 692, 694 (8th Cir. 2003).
18 U.S.C. § 2252(b)(1)
argues that our decision in Woodard is not
controlling precedent for his case. After initially opposing
this argument, the government now agrees with Gauld's
position and joins him in asking us to remand the case to the
district court. Gauld reads Woodard narrowly as
addressing only whether a juvenile adjudication may
constitute a prior conviction for Apprendi purposes,
an issue we analyzed at length in United States v.
Smalley, 294 F.3d 1030, 1033 (8th Cir.2002). In the
alternative, Gauld argues that Woodard was wrongly
decided and wishes to preserve the issue for further appeal.
reads Woodard too narrowly. Woodard
expressly addressed "whether a juvenile adjudication can
be considered a prior conviction under 18 U.S.C. §
2252(b)." 694 F.3d at 952. Woodard's
discussion of Apprendi did not limit its holding to
Apprendi issues. See id. at 952-53. The
court discussed Apprendi for good reason, and it is
that reason that ultimately defeats Gauld's argument.
Before determining whether a juvenile adjudication qualified
as a prior conviction under § 2252(b), the court needed
to address whether a juvenile adjudication met the
constitutional requirements, as discussed in
Apprendi, for use as a "prior conviction"
for sentencing purposes. See id. at 953.
Congress's characterization of a juvenile adjudication as
a prior conviction is not dispositive because the
characterization implicates a defendant's due process
rights. Id. The Apprendi discussion in
Woodard dealt with whether juvenile adjudications
could constitutionally qualify as prior convictions.
The logical next question is do juvenile
adjudications qualify as prior convictions under §
2252(b). To resolve the defendant's appeal in
Woodard, the court necessarily had to answer the
latter question. It did, answering "that a juvenile
adjudication may be considered a prior conviction under 18
U.S.C. § 2252(b)." Id. (footnote omitted).
dissent joins Gauld and the government in their
interpretation of Woodard. According to the dissent,
Gauld's narrow reading of Woodard is "the
most plausible reading." But to read Woodard so
requires assuming that the Woodard court ignored and
left unaddressed the defendant's main argument. The
defendant's brief in Woodard makes the same
statutory construction argument on which Gauld, the
government, and the dissent all rely. When the
Woodard holding is read in light of the