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United States v. Bentley

United States District Court, D. Minnesota

August 28, 2019

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff,
v.
(2) CRAIG VERNARD BENTLEY, Defendant.

          Deidre Y. Aanstad, Assistant United States Attorney, Counsel for Plaintiff.

          Craig Hunter, Northland Law, Counsel for Defendant.

          MEMORANDUM OF LAW & ORDER

          MICHAEL J. DAVIS UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT JUDGE.

         I. INTRODUCTION

         This matter is before the Court on Defendant's Motion to Amend PSR. [Docket No. 133]

         II. BACKGROUND

         On August 22, 2016, a Complaint was filed in the District of Minnesota charging Defendant Craig Vernard Bentley and co-Defendants Gregory Vernell Bentley and Vanessa Lynne Brown with Robbery, Assault with a Dangerous Weapon, Assault Resulting in Serious Bodily Injury, and Discharge of a Firearm during the Commission of a Crime of Violence, all occurring on or about August 14, 2016, against DCB and all in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 2, 113(a)(3), 113(a)(6), 924(c), 1151, 1152, 1153(a), and 2111. [Docket No. 16] A four-count Indictment was returned with the same charges against Defendant and his co-Defendants on September 21, 2016. [Docket No. 25]

         On February 16, 2017, a one-count Information was filed charging Defendant and co-Defendant Brown with Conspiracy to Distribute and Possess with Intent to Distribute Heroin, on August 14, 2016, in violation of 21 U.S.C. §§ 841(a)(1) and 846. [Docket No. 78] On February 22, 2017, Defendant pled guilty to Count 1 of the Information. [Docket Nos. 83, 85] In exchange, the Government moved to dismiss the Indictment against Defendant at sentencing. (Plea Agreement ¶ 1.)

         A Presentence Investigation Report (“PSR”) was prepared. [Docket No. 92] The original PSR recommended application of a 2-level enhancement under U.S.S.G. § 2D1.1(b)(2) for use of violence “[b]ecause on August 14, 2016, the defendant punched and participated in an assault against victim DCB in an attempt to obtain drug proceeds.” (PSR ¶ 25.) In Defendant's sentencing position paper, he objected to the application of that 2-level enhancement and to “all of the factual assertions in the presentence report in support of that enhancement.” ([Docket No. 94] Defendant's Position on Sentencing at 1-2.)

         On June 26, 2017, the Court held a sentencing hearing. [Docket No. 112] The Court sustained Defendant's objection to the 2-level enhancement under § 2D1.1(b)(2). Defendant was sentenced to 120 months in prison. The Statement of Reasons, filed June 27, 2017 [Docket No. 115] states that paragraphs 12 and 25 of the PSR (recounting that Defendant had assaulted DCB on August 14, 2016) were ordered deleted and that the 2-level enhancement under U.S.S.G. § 2D1.1(b)(2) be eliminated. On July 5, 2017, a Revised PSR was filed that omitted paragraphs 12 and 25 from the original PSR and eliminated the 2-level enhancement under U.S.S.G. § 2D1.1(b)(2). [Docket No. 123]

         On April 16, 2019, Defendant filed the current Motion to Amend PSR. [Docket No. 133] Defendant requests that, pursuant to Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 36, the Court amend four additional paragraphs in the Revised PSR: Paragraphs 14, 15, 17, and 23. He asserts that his participation in the Residential Drug Abuse Program (“RDAP”) is inhibited by the inclusion of these paragraphs in the Revised PSR because the cited paragraphs have led to the Bureau of Prisons assigning Defendant a higher security level based on the conclusion that he was involved in an assault involving a weapon.

         III. DISCUSSION

         A. Standard

         Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 36 provides: “After giving any notice it considers appropriate, the court may at any time correct a clerical error in a judgment, order, or other part of the record, or correct ...


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