from the United States District Court for the Middle District
of Tennessee at Nashville. No. 3:15-cr-00101-1-Waverly D.
Crenshaw, Jr., District Judge.
Michael C. Holley, FEDERAL PUBLIC DEFENDER, Nashville,
Tennessee, for Appellant.
Carran Daughtrey, UNITED STATES ATTORNEY'S OFFICE,
Nashville, Tennessee, for Appellee.
Before: SUHRHEINRICH, BUSH, and READLER, Circuit Judges.
A. READLER, Circuit Judge.
fifteen-count indictment charged Damion Faulkner with a host
of child-pornography-related offenses. Following his guilty
plea to each count of the indictment, Faulkner was sentenced
to 570 months in prison.
appeal, Faulkner argues that the United States Sentencing
Guidelines required the district court to "group"
together at sentencing his respective charges for production
and attempted production of child pornography (Counts 1 and
2), which would have resulted in a lower offense level for
purposes of calculating Faulkner's Guidelines range.
Faulkner also challenges his sentence as both substantively
and procedurally unreasonable. We reject each of his
arguments and AFFIRM the judgment of the
childhood on, Damion Faulkner's life was plagued by
sexual misconduct. A stepbrother sexually abused Faulkner
when he was nine years old. And Faulkner's father was
convicted and classified as a sex offender for filming
Faulkner's thirteen-year-old stepsister while she was
showering. Tragically, Faulkner would mirror this misconduct
as an adult.
time, Faulkner overcame his challenging upbringing,
graduating high school and enlisting in the United States
Navy, where he served his country for two years before being
discharged under honorable conditions. Upon his discharge,
Faulkner went to live with his brother's family in
the years that followed, Faulkner's life would take a
downward turn. He would have run-ins with the law, including
convictions for shoplifting and drunk driving. And far worse
than that, Faulkner began to act upon his long-harbored
sexual attraction to young girls.
Faulkner Engages In Sexual Misconduct With Minors.
residing with his brother, his brother's wife, and their
five-year-old daughter, M.F., Faulkner touched M.F.'s
groin on several occasions. M.F. told her parents about the
incidents, but Faulkner denied the accusations, and no report
was made to law enforcement.
returned to his abusive ways a few years later. M.F., now
eleven, along with her maternal half-sister, five-year-old
O.B., were staying with M.F.'s father and Faulkner over a
summer weekend. On the first night of the girls' stay,
Faulkner snuck into O.B.'s room as she slept, pulled
aside her shorts and underwear, and touched her bare vaginal
area, recording the incident on his phone, both by photograph
separate incident took place the following day. This time,
Faulkner took photographs as O.B. (wearing a bathing suit)
and M.F. (wearing a sun dress) sat together. Though the girls
were fully clothed, many of the photographs focused on the
girls' genital areas or had other sexual overtones.
circulated the images he captured to at least ten other
like-minded individuals, with hopes of receiving similar
images in return. With one of these individuals, he shared
lurid advice about how to make sexual advances on
prepubescent girls: "[J]ust get her alone and kiss her
the worsed [sic] she can do is say no and if she does
that's [sic] its tell her u want to make her a
woman." To another individual, Faulkner described his
previous "relationship" with M.F., explaining that
she had reported the repeated abuse to no avail. And to yet
another, Faulkner claimed to have taken additional
photographs of M.F. that were lost when his phone stopped
Faulkner, one criminal act led to another. In addition to
recording illegal pornographic images of children, Faulkner
also illegally amassed a large collection of pornographic
images and videos of other child victims. Over time, Faulkner
collected more than 3, 500 images, the worst ...