United States District Court, S.D. Georgia, Savannah Division
WILLIAM T. MOORE, JR., JUDGE
Garrett has filed a Motion for Resentencing Pursuant to
Section 404 of the First Step Act (Doc. 800).
was convicted by a jury of 21 counts of a redacted, third
superseding indictment charging him with various instances of
distribution of controlled substances (and conspiring to do
such) and use of a communication facility. The statutory
penalty as to each of Counts 1, 4 and 5 of that Indictment
was mandatory life imprisonment due to the quantity
of cocaine base associated with each of those counts, and the
Government's filing of a 21 U.S.C. § 851 information
on the basis of Defendant's three prior felony drug
convictions. Defendant was therefore sentenced to a mandatory
term of life imprisonment as to each of Counts 1, 4 and 5. A
term of life imprisonment was also imposed as to Count 3,
although life imprisonment was not mandatory as to that
First Step Act of 2018 has the effect of lowering
Defendant's statutory penalty as to each of Counts 1, 4
and 5 from mandatory life to not less than 10 years nor more
than life imprisonment. The Act also lowers Defendant's
statutory penalty as to Count 3 from not less than 10 years
nor more than life to not more than 30 years.
Defendant remains a career offender and several of his counts
of conviction continue to carry a statutory maximum term of
life imprisonment, his total offense level remains 37.
Coupled with a Criminal History Category VI, that total
offense level yields a guideline range of 3 60 months to life
imprisonment. Since Defendant is no longer subject to
mandatory life imprisonment, the Court may reduce
Defendant's sentence if it decides that a sentence
reduction is appropriate.
Court remembers well the facts of this case, having presided
over Defendant's trial. Defendant was a principal
participant of the drug conspiracy and distributed
significant quantities of cocaine base, including three sales
to Joseph ``Doobie" Smart, Sr,, a confidential source
used by the Drug Enforcement Administration during the case
investigation. Smart was scheduled to testify before a
federal grand jury as to those purchases and his overall
knowledge of the conspiracy, but he was shot to death prior
to offering such testimony. Defendant's half brother and
codefendant, Lamond Garrett, was found guilty by a federal
jury of Smart's murder and was sentenced to life
imprisonment. Lamond Garrett allegedly told a jailhouse
inmate that Defendant was aware of the plan to kill Smart and
provided the firearm used to commit the murder.
name arose with respect to another murder as well, this one
occurring three months prior to Smart's murder.
Sheinettra Brown was shot five times in front of a Savannah
lounge by codefendant Lacy DeLoach, who worked closely with
Defendant in illegal drug distribution. Two witnesses
described Defendant as not only being present when Brown was
killed, but as the individual who directed DeLoach to kill
Brown for stealing Defendant's cocaine. DeLoach was
ultimately convicted of this murder by the State of Georgia
and sentenced to life imprisonment.
the evidence as to Defendant's involvement in the
above-described murders might not have satisfied a
"beyond a reasonable doubt" standard, it certainly
gives this Court pause in its consideration of a sentence
reduction for Defendant. The Court is also aware that
Defendant has incurred at least six disciplinary sanctions
while in Bureau of Prisons custody, including possession of a
dangerous weapon and possession of a hazardous tool.
other side of the coin, however, is the fact that two of
Defendant's state criminal convictions were vacated in
2008. Those convictions represented two of the three felony
drug convictions on which the 21 U.S.C. § 851 sentencing
enhancement filed by the Government was based. Additionally,
the two vacated convictions are the very convictions on which
Defendant's designation as a career offender is based.
Court appropriately ruled in 2 015 that Defendant was not
entitled to habeas relief on the basis of his vacated state
sentences because he failed to exercise the requisite
diligence in seeking to have them vacated. Nonetheless, had
Defendant acted more diligently in that matter, he likely
would have completed service of his federal custodial
sentence by now.
fair weight to both the aggravating and mitigating factors
associated with Defendant, and fully taking into account the
sentencing factors set forth at 18 U.S.C. § 3 553(a),
the Court GRANTS Defendant's motion and reduces his
sentence pursuant to the First Step Act and 18 U.S.C. §
3582(c)(1)(B) as specified below.
Court hereby reduces Defendant's lifetime term of
imprisonment as to each of Counts 1, 4, and 5 of the
redacted, third superseding indictment, to 42 6 months of
imprisonment. The sentence of life imposed as to Count 3 of
the redacted, third superseding indictment is reduced to
360 months of imprisonment. The sentences as
to all other counts of conviction remain the same as
reflected in the Judgment and Commitment Order dated October
25, 2000, and the sentences imposed as to all counts will run
concurrently with each other.
Defendant's supervised release term as to each of Counts
1, 4 and 5 of the redacted, third superseding indictment is
reduced from 10 years to 8 years. Defendant's supervised
release term as to Count 3 is reduced from 8 years to 6
years. The supervised release terms as to all other counts of
conviction remain the same as imposed ...