United States District Court, D. Columbia
October 18, 2005.
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,
ANTHONY LEE WEDGE, Jr., Defendant.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: ELLEN HUVELLE, District Judge
Defendant Anthony Wedge entered a plea of guilty to unlawful
possession of a firearm in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1). At
sentencing on October 14, 2005, the Court imposed a sentence of
53 months' incarceration with three years of supervised release.
This Memorandum Opinion sets forth the reasons for that sentence.
Pursuant to the § 2k2.1(a)(2) of the Guidelines, the base
offense level is 24, and because of his acceptance of
responsibility, the total offense level was decreased under §
3E1.1(b) for a total offense level of 21. Defendant has three
prior convictions, and his criminal history points are 8, for a
Category IV criminal history. As agreed by all parties, the
resulting Guideline range is 57 to 71 months.
Following United States v. Booker, 125 S. Ct. 738 (2005), the
Sentencing Guidelines are "effectively advisory." A court must
consider Guidelines ranges, but is permitted "to tailor the
sentence in light of other statutory concerns as well." Id. at
757 (citing 18 U.S.C. § 3553(a)). Pursuant to § 3553, a court
must consider "the nature and circumstances of the offense and
the history and characteristics of the defendant" and "impose a
sentence sufficient, but not greater than necessary, to comply
with the purposes set forth in paragraph (2)," which are:
(A) to reflect the seriousness of the offense, to
promote respect for the law, and to provide just
punishment for the offense;
(B) to afford adequate deterrence to criminal
(C) to protect the public from further crimes of the
(D) to provide the defendant with needed educational
or vocational training, medical care, or other
correctional treatment in the most effective manner.
18 U.S.C. § 3553(a)(2).
With respect to the nature and circumstances of the offense, it
is significant that Wedge's offense did not involve any violence
or threatened violence. Second, with respect to the history and
characteristics of the defendant, it is noteworthy that
defendant's last criminal conviction occurred in 2001, and since
his release from prison in 2003, he has consistently maintained
employment in the filed of car mechanics and has also enrolled in
Excel Institute to pursue his interest in being an auto mechanic.
Since his arrest in this case, he has demonstrated a true effort
to rehabilitate himself, and he has shown that he can be a
productive citizen. Finally, the Court gave a non-Guideline
sentence because of the fact that had the defendant been charged
in D.C. Superior Court, as opposed to federal court, he would
have received credit for the almost four months that he spent
pretrial in a halfway house. Defendants facing gun possession
charges often stand trial in local, not federal, court and in
order "to avoid unwarranted sentence disparities among
defendants," 18 U.S.C. § 3553(a)(6), the Court has taken into
consideration the amount of time that defendant spent in a
halfway house prior of sentencing. For these reasons, the Court has concluded that a four-month
reduction below the Guideline range, along with three years of
supervised release, is a "just punishment," and it adequately
reflects the seriousness of the offense, promotes respect for the
law and meets the goal of deterrence.
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