United States v. Goliday (7th Cir. July 2022)

The Federal Docket

July 26, 2022

During Thomas Goliday’s plea colloquy, he disclaimed the quantity of drugs that was imputed to him by the Government’s factual basis and made it clear that he did not understand his conspiracy charge and how it differed from his drug charges. The district court nevertheless accepted the plea, however, and Goliday appealed.

The Seventh Circuit found plain error in the lower court’s violations of Rule 11. There was no adequate factual basis for Goliday’s plea, and he did not understand the nature of all of his charges. Both of these errors affected his substantial rights and the fairness of his plea proceedings. The Seventh Circuit thus vacated Goliday’s conspiracy conviction and the sentence on all of his charges and remanded.

Appeal from the Southern District of Indiana
Opinion by Scudder, joined by Sykes and Brennan

Click here to read the opinion

Tom Church - Tom is a trial and appellate lawyer focusing on criminal defense and civil trials. Tom is the author of "The Federal Docket" and is a contributor to Mercer Law Review's Annual Survey in the areas of federal sentencing guidelines and criminal law. Tom graduated with honors from the University of Georgia Law School where he served as a research assistant to the faculty in the areas of constitutional law and civil rights litigation. Read Tom's reviews on AVVO. Follow Tom on Linkedin.

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