Supervised Release Cannot Be Revoked After Supervision Term Ends

Anthony Holman's supervised release was revoked for failing to pay restitution and picking up a new charge. However, the violation petition was not submitted until after Holman’s term of supervision had already expired. No summons was pending at the time either. Generally, whenever a U.S. Probation Officer believes that a defendant has violated his or her supervised release, a violation petition will be submitted to the Court. The petition can request that no action be taken, that a summons for the defendant's appearance be issued, or that an arrest warrant be filed. The U.S. Court of Appeals DC Circuit reversed and vacated the revocation for lack of jurisdiction. The expiration of a term of supervised release can be tolled under 18 U.S.C. § 3583(i).

That statute provides:

(i) Delayed Revocation.—

The power of the court to revoke a term of supervised release for violation of a condition of supervised release, and to order the defendant to serve a term of imprisonment and, subject to the limitations in subsection (h), a further term of supervised release, extends beyond the expiration of the term of supervised release for any period reasonably necessary for the adjudication of matters arising before its expiration if, before its expiration, a warrant or summons has been issued on the basis of an allegation of such a violation. 18 U.S.C. § 3583(i).

supervised release-no-jurisdiction

Supervised Release

However, because no summons was issued for the alleged violations prior to the expiration of Holman’s supervision, the district court could not rely on § 3583(i) to support jurisdiction over the revocation, the court held.

The appeals court also rejected the Government’s argument that Holman’s failure to pay restitution amounted to an “ongoing” violation. The court held that Holman paid what he could when he was working and that no evidence existed which showed a “willful” failure to pay.

United States v. Holman, 16-3107 ( U.S. Court of Appeals - DC Circuit 2017).

Featured image by: Benton Martin (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0  ( , via Wikimedia Commons  courts.

About Brandon Sample

Brandon Sample is an attorney, author, and criminal justice reform activist. Brandon’s law practice is focused on federal criminal defense, federal appeals, federal post-conviction relief, federal civil rights litigation, federal administrative law, and the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).

1 Comment

  1. David Bernier on November 15, 2019 at 4:21 pm


    I’m trying to find the answer to this: I took a plea agreement for making a false statement. The terms in the plea were 5 years incarceration and 3 years supervised release. The judge sentenced me to 6 months incarceration and 2 years SR.

    18 months into my supervised release, the judge revoked the SR … I was reincarnated for 6 months with another 2 years SR (identical time my original sentence).

    I just read online that the max SR the judge can impose (based on the original offense) is 3 years, less any time in prison.

    What I can’t find is any case law or rule to substantiate that the 18 months of SR I already served counts towards that 3 year max SR term.

    So, if Im correct, the max SR the Judge should have imposed (without an upward departure to the USSG) is as follows:

    36 months (3 years)
    – 18 months already served
    – 6 months (second incarceration)
    = 12 months

    Am I correct in my assessment?

    Do you have any case law or rule to support that the judge errored in imposing too much SR?

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