Rita v. United States

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In Rita v. United States, 127 S. Ct. 2456 (June 21, 2007), the U.S. Supreme Court considered and upheld a presumption of reasonableness in sentencing by appellate courts reviewing challenges to the severity of a sentence.

The federal courts of appeals review federal sentences and set aside those they find "unreasonable." See, e.g., United States v. Booker, 543 U.S. 220, 261-263 (2005). Most appellate courts presume that a sentence imposed within a properly calculated United States Sentencing Guidelines range is a reasonable sentence. See, e.g., 177 Fed. Appx. 357, 358 (CA4 2006) (per curiam) (case below); see also United States Sentencing Commission, Guidelines Manual (Nov. 2006) (USSG or Guidelines).

The Court held, 8-1 (Justice David Souter dissenting), that the law permits the courts of appeals to use this presumption.