United States District Court, M.D. Georgia, Valdosta Division
November 24, 2014
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,
SEAN SMITH, Defendant.
HUGH LAWSON, Senior Judge.
This case is before the Court on Defendant's Motion for Grant of In Forma Pauperis Status and Appointment of Federal Defender as Counsel. (Doc. 52). Defendant seeks representation to determine whether he is eligible for a sentencing reduction under Amendment 782 to the Sentencing Guidelines, which went into effect November 1, 2014.
There is no filing fee for a motion of this nature. Accordingly, Defendant's motion to proceed in forma pauperis is denied as moot.
A motion for a sentencing reduction filed pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(2), which Defendant here desires assistance submitting, "is simply a vehicle through which appropriately sentenced prisoners can urge the court to exercise leniency to give certain defendants the benefits of an amendment to the Guidelines rather than a challenge to the appropriateness of the original sentence." United States v. Webb, 565 F.3d 789, 794 (11th Cir. 2009) (citing United States v. Whitebird, 55 F.3d 1007, 10011 (5th Cir. 1995) (internal quotations omitted). Examining the nature of these proceedings and distinguishing a § 3582(c)(2) motion from other sentencing or resentencing proceedings to which certain constitutional rights attach, the Eleventh Circuit has held that there is no statutory or constitutional right to appointment of counsel for a § 3582(c)(2) motion or hearing. Id. at 795.
Accordingly, the Court denies Defendant's motion for appointment of counsel. (Doc. 39). The Court directs Defendant to file a pro se motion for a reduction in his sentence in accordance with Amendment 782, if Defendant believes he is entitled to the reduction.