Victor White was convicted for failure to appear for trial, in viola-
tion of 18 U.S.C.A. § 3146(a)(1) (West Supp. 1996), and sentenced
to thirty months imprisonment, followed by three years of supervised
release. He appeals his conviction and sentence.
In March 1995, White was charged with a drug offense. He was
subject to a sentence of not less than twenty years if convicted,
because of the quantity of drugs and because of a prior felony drug
conviction. White was released on bond to return to Pennsylvania
before trial. The trial was initially scheduled for June 27, but was con-
tinued to July 7. On that date, White called the clerk's office to say
he would be at least an hour late. The judge, jury, and court personnel
were present in the court at 9 A.M., the time scheduled for trial, and
remained until 10:45 A.M. The district judge then dismissed the jury
Although White claims that he arrived later in the day and went to
the courtroom, he did not contact his local probation officer, the dis-
trict court, or the clerk's office. Around noon, a deputy marshall took
White's picture around to all the security personnel in the building;
none reported having seen White, and none of them later reported see-
ing him at any time that day.
White's Virginia probation officer next spoke with him on July
20th. White declared that he would turn himself in, but did not do so.
He was apprehended in Queens, New York on August 15. White rep-
resented himself as Anthony White, gave a false date of birth, and
denied knowledge of any charges in Virginia.
At the jury trial for the failure to appear offense, both White and
his sister testified that they had car trouble on the trip to Roanoke, and
that he arrived in the courtroom before lunch, called his lawyer, and
called his probation officer in Pennsylvania. He presented evidence