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Showing posts from December, 2017

A Traffic Stop Followed by a Summons is not an Intervening Arrest for Sentencing Guidelines Purposes

In United States v. Ley, __ F.3d __, 2017 WL 5618617 (3d Cir., Nov. 22, 2017), the Third Circuit held that a traffic stop, followed by the issuance of a summons, is not an intervening arrest for the purpose of calculating a defendant’s prior convictions under USSG § 4A1.2(a)(2).   Defendant John Francis Ley received two speeding tickets on two consecutive days.  After writing each ticket, the police released Ley and informed him that the matter would proceed via summons.  No arrest was made and Ley was sentenced for both matters on the same day. The District Court, however, held that the issuance of the summons constituted an intervening arrest for the purposes of the Guidelines and each ticket therefore merited an individual criminal history point.  Ley appealed.  Looking at the ordinary meaning of both “arrest” and “summons,” as well as the Supreme Court’s history of distinguishing arrests from other interactions with law enforcement, the Third Circuit, joining three other circuits …

Court upholds search under "plain feel" doctrine and expands generic robbery definition

In United States v. Graves, No. 16-3995 (3d Cir. Dec. 13, 2017), the Court affirmed Shaun Graves's 100-month sentence for a single count of unlawful firearm possession.  In doing so, the Circuit rejected Graves's claims that he was subject to an unreasonable investigatory search.  More significantly, the Court held that Graves's two prior North Carolina robbery convictions qualified as "crimes of violence" under the Sentencing Guidelines, see U.S.S.G. 4B1.2(a)(2), because they were not broader than generic robbery, as defined by an overwhelming majority of states.

Harrisburg Police Officer Dennis Simmons stopped, handcuffed, and frisked Graves based on suspicion that he had participated in a nearby shooting.  Prior to thestop, Simmons observed Graves walking in a high crime neighborhood at night with another man, both of whom matched descriptions of the shooting suspects.  And when Simmons first saw Graves from his unmarked car, Graves lifted his han…