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United States v. Smith

United States District Court, District of Columbia

September 18, 2018

THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
v.
MARK D. SMITH

          MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

          Royce C. Lamberth Senior United States District Judge

         Before the Court are defendant Mark D. Smith's pro se motion [150] and supplemental motions submitted through counsel [169] [173], seeking a sentence reduction pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(2), and based upon the retroactive application of Amendment 782 of the United States Sentencing Guidelines (the "Guidelines"). Smith also filed pro se a Motion for Summary Judgment as a Matter of Law [156].

         After considering the motions, the entire record herein, and the applicable law, the Court finds that although Smith is eligible for a sentence reduction under § 3582(c)(2), such a reduction is not warranted in these circumstances, and will therefore DENY his motions.

         BACKGROUND

         On August 24, 2010, Smith pleaded guilty to one count of Conspiracy to distribute and Possess With Intent to Distribute cocaine, in contravention of 21 U.S.C. §§ 841(a)(1), 841(b)(1)(a), and 846, pursuant to Fed. R. Crim. P. 11(c)(1)(C). Plea Agreement, ECF No. 102 ¶ 1.

         In accepting the terms of his plea agreement, Smith acknowledged that he was "accountable for at least 1.5 kilograms but less than 4.5 kilograms of cocaine base[, ]" which represented "the total amount involved in [his] relevant criminal conduct." Id. ¶ 2. He and the Government separately agreed that "156 months[' incarceration] [was] the appropriate sentence for this offense." Id. ¶ 3. Further, Smith and the Government agreed as follows:

Should the Court not agree that the sentence agreed upon by the parties is appropriate, and [if Smith] does not withdraw his plea, [he] and the Government agree to the following: [Smith] will be sentenced according to Title 18, United States Code, Sections 3553(a) and 3553(c) through (f) and upon consideration of the United States Sentencing Guidelines.

Id. ¶ 5.

         On April 30, 2014, the U.S. Sentencing Commission (the "Commission") submitted to Congress Amendment 782 of the Guidelines, proposing a downward revision to the applicable sentencing ranges for drug trafficking offenses. The Commission then passed Amendment 788 to allow Amendment 782's revisions to be applied retroactively, and on November 1, 2014, Amendment 782 and its retroactive application became effective. In his current motion, Smith seeks relief under these amended provisions of the Sentencing Guidelines.

         DISCUSSION

         Smith's § 3582 (c) (2) Motions

         To grant a motion for a sentence reduction under 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(2), two separate conditions must exist. A prisoner must (1) be eligible for the requested reduction and (2) early release must be warranted. Dillon v. United States, 560 U.S. 817, 827 (2010). Smith fails to meet the second of these requirements because the facts of this case do not warrant early release in accordance with any of the factors set forth in 18 U.S.C. § 3553(a). See Id. § 3582(c)(2) (stating the Court may reduce the term of imprisonment "on its own motion," but must consider and weigh the factors set forth in § 3553(a)).

         Accordingly, although Smith is statutorily eligible for a sentence reduction, such a reduction is not warranted in these circumstances. Therefore, his motion for relief under § 3582(c)(2) will be denied.

         i. Smith's sentence was based upon the ...


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