Five years after the Supreme Court held that the federal sentencing guidelines are merely advisory, judges still follow them for the most part, though there is an ever-growing divergence, according to the most recent federal statistics. Although nationally more than half of sentences are within the guidelines, the rate varies widely from district to district -- from a low of 27.8 percent in the District of Arizona to a high of 92.3 percent in the District for the Northern Mariana Islands, both part of the 9th Circuit.
Federal Judges Still Finding Their Way in Post-'Booker' Sentencing Landscape
New Jersey Law Journal
April 23, 2010