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United States v. Jones

United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Monroe Division

June 4, 2015

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
v.
COREY D. JONES No. 10724-035

RULING

ROBERT G. JAMES, District Judge.

This matter is before the Court for consideration under 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(2).

On March 21, 2001, Defendant Corey D. Jones ("Jones") pled guilty to possession with intent to distribute and conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine base (crack cocaine). Following Jones' plea, the United States Probation Office ("USPO") conducted a pre-sentence investigation and issued a Pre-Sentence Report. The Probation Officer determined that Jones' range of imprisonment under the United States Sentencing Guidelines was 262-327 months. Included in the Guidelines determination were a four-level enhancement for Jones' leadership role in the conspiracy and a two-level enhancement for his possession of dangerous weapons. On August 20, 2001, the Court sentenced Jones to 294 months imprisonment. A Judgment imposing that term of imprisonment was signed on August 24, 2001.

On November 1, 2007, the United States Sentencing Commission's ("Sentencing Commission's") Amendment 706, as further amended by Amendment 711, to U.S.S.G. § 2D1.1, Unlawful Manufacturing, Importing, Exporting, or Trafficking (Including Possession with Intent to Commit These Offenses); Attempt or Conspiracy, took effect. Amendment 706 generally reduced by two levels the base offense levels applicable to crack cocaine offenses. On December 11, 2007, the Sentencing Commission voted in favor of applying the amendment retroactively to crack cocaine offenses, effective March 3, 2008. The Sentencing Commission also promulgated amendments to Policy Statement § 1B1.10, Reduction in Term of Imprisonment as a Result of Amended Guidelines Range, which will implement the retroactive application of Amendment 706, as amended by Amendment 711, effective March 3, 2008.

After the Sentencing Commission's amendments to the base offense levels for crack, the Court began, sua sponte, to review the defendants potentially affected by those amendments. Jones was identified by the USPO as a person who might be affected by the amendments. Additionally, Jones filed his own motion for reduction in March, 2008.

The USPO provided the Court with a revised Guidelines calculations sheet based on the amendments to Section 2D1.1. After a two-level reduction to his base offense level, Jones was subject to a term of imprisonment of 210-262 months.

As part of the administrative process, on August 5, 2008, the Court issued an order appointing the Office of the Federal Public Defender to represent Jones. The Order further provided notice of the Court's intent to reduce Jones' term of imprisonment from 294 to 236 months, based on the Court's review of the pre-sentence report and record. Finally, the Order required counsel to file within 60 days a notice stating (1) whether a hearing is requested or waived and (2) whether there are any objections to the re-calculation and/or to the Court's proposed term of imprisonment. Counsel were also provided a copy of the Probation Office's calculations.

Both the Government and Jones' counsel filed notices indicating that they had no objection to the Court's intended reduction and waiving a hearing. [Doc. Nos. 162 & 164]. Thus, on November 14, 2008, the Court issued an Amended Judgment [Doc. No. 171] reducing Jones' term of imprisonment to 236 months.

Jones again came before the Court for consideration under 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(2) in 2011. The Fair Sentencing Act of 2010 ("FSA"), Publ. L. 111-220, became effective on August 3, 2010, lowering the penalties for crack cocaine offenses. The United States Sentencing Commission then issued Amendment 750, amending the United States Sentencing Guidelines and lowering the offense levels for crack cocaine offenses.

On September 15, 2011, Jones filed a motion for reduction under the FSA and amended Guidelines. [Doc. No. 176]. As it did in 2008, the USPO provided the Court with a revised Guidelines calculations sheet based on the amendments to Section 2D1.1. The USPO's recalculation indicated that Jones' Guideline range had not changed.

However, on November 1, 2011, the Court issued an Order [Doc. No. 177] notifying the Government and the Office of the Federal Public Defender of its intent to issue an amended judgment reducing Jones' term of imprisonment from 236 months to the Guideline minimum of 210 months. The Court further ordered the Government and the Office of the Federal Public Defender to file memoranda stating whether a hearing was requested or waived and whether there were any objections to the re-calculation and/or to the Court's proposed term of imprisonment.

The Government timely filed a memorandum waiving any hearing and stating that it had no objection to the Court's intended reduction. Jones, who apparently disagreed with the re-calculation, filed a pro se memorandum requesting a reduction to 168 months imprisonment.

On January 25, 2012, the Court issued a Second Amended Judgment [Doc. No. 181], reducing Jones' term of imprisonment to 210 months.

Jones is again before the Court for a third time for reconsideration under 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(2), seeking a reduction in light of the United States Sentencing Commission's Amendment 782 to the Guidelines. On December 4, 2014, the Office of the Federal ...


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