« "The Criminal Class Action" | Main | Plea deals and probation term bring closure to high-profile bullying-suidice prosecutions in Massachusetts »

May 5, 2011

USSC request comments on possible retroactivity of new crack and drug guidelines

As detailed in this document described as a "Reader-Friendly Version of the Commission's Request for Comment on Retroactivity," the US Sentencing Commission is now requesting public comment by June 2, 2011, concerning "whether Amendment 2 [of its most recent set of Guideline amendments sent to Congress], pertaining to drug offenses, should be included as an amendment that may be applied retroactively to previously sentenced defendants."  Here is more background and details from this document:

On April 28, 2011, the Commission submitted to the Congress amendments to the sentencing guidelines and official commentary, which become effective on November 1, 2011, unless Congress acts to the contrary.  Such amendments and the reasons for amendment subsequently were published in the Federal Register.  See 76 FR 24960 (May 3, 2011).

Amendment 2, pertaining to drug offenses, has the effect of lowering guideline ranges.... The Commission seeks comment regarding whether, pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(2) and 28 U.S.C. § 994(u), this amendment, or any part thereof, should be included in subsection (c) of §1B1.10 (Reduction in Term of Imprisonment as a Result of Amended Guideline Range (Policy Statement)) as an amendment that may be applied retroactively to previously sentenced defendants.

The Commission also requests comment regarding whether, if it amends §1B1.10(c) to include this amendment, it also should amend §1B1.10 to provide guidance to the courts on the procedure to be used when applying an amendment retroactively under 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(2)....

Amendment 2, pertaining to drug offenses, contains three parts.  The Commission seeks comment on whether it should list the entire amendment, or one or more parts of the amendment, in subsection (c) of §1B1.10 as an amendment that may be applied retroactively to previously sentenced defendants.

Part A changes the Drug Quantity Table in §2D1.1 for offenses involving crack cocaine. This has the effect of lowering guideline ranges for certain defendants for offenses involving crack cocaine.

Part B contains both mitigating and aggravating provisions for offenses involving drugs, regardless of drug type. The mitigating provisions have the effect of lowering guideline ranges for certain defendants in drug cases, and the aggravating provisions have the effect of raising guideline ranges for certain defendants in drug cases.

Part C deletes the cross reference in §2D2.1(b)(1) under which an offender who possessed more than 5 grams of crack cocaine was sentenced under §2D1.1. This has the effect of lowering guideline ranges for certain defendants for offenses involving simple possession of crack cocaine.

For each of these three parts, the Commission requests comment on whether that part should be listed in subsection (c) of §1B1.10 as an amendment that may be applied retroactively....

If the Commission does list the entire amendment, or one or more parts of the amendment, in subsection (c) of §1B1.10 as an amendment that may be applied retroactively to previously sentenced defendants, should the Commission provide further guidance or limitations regarding the circumstances in which and the amount by which sentences may be reduced? 

May 5, 2011 at 04:32 PM | Permalink

TrackBack

TrackBack URL for this entry:
http://www.typepad.com/services/trackback/6a00d83451574769e2014e884357b9970d

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference USSC request comments on possible retroactivity of new crack and drug guidelines:

Comments

please sign the petition

www.change.org under the FAMM retroactivity petition

Posted by: Kerri | May 5, 2011 8:59:55 PM

I am a student, also a loved one of a prisoner who has served 14 years of a 20 year sentence due to a crack cocaine offense in 1997. Absolutely I believe that Amendment 2 should be retroactive. I believe this not only due to my connection with a prisoner currently involved in these circumstances but because it is a matter of plain and simple fairness. By the U.S sentencing commission putting this change of the crack cocaine sentencing guidelines into action they admit to a flaw and/or unfair sentencing guidelines for crack cocaine offenders. This flaw or act of unfairness has been present before this amendment came into existance meaning that crack cocaine offenders have not been sentenced fairly since the crack cocaine sentencing guidelines came into existence.

Posted by: Angela LaGrone | May 13, 2011 11:22:44 PM

I am a mother, who has two children that are in federal prison who are serving a minimum of thirty years and twelve years due to a crack cocaine offense in 2006 and 2007. Absolutely I believe that all Amendments should be retroactive. I believe this not only due to my connection with a prisoners currently involved in these circumstances but because it is a matter of plain and simple fairness. By the U.S. Sentencing Commission putting this change of the crack cocaine sentencing guidelines into action they admit to a flaw and/or unfair sentencing guidelines for crack cocaine offenders. This flaw or act of infairness has been present before this amendment came into existance meaning that crack cocaine offenders have not been sentenced fairly sincethe crack cocaine sentencing guidelines came into exitence. We need this to be retroactivity so our children can come home to their children that miss them so much.

Posted by: gwendolyn jacobs | Jun 2, 2011 2:38:36 PM

I am a single mother of two as a result of my children's father who have served 11 years on a 13 year sentence. The longest 11 years of their lives. I feel the Amendment should be applied to ALL eligible inmates. I can not see it any other way as this will be unjusted if not adjusted (retroavtive). Just as my children and me need our loved one home, I share the pain and hurt of all the other families and children that have been left behind as my children have as they grieve for their father. Please take an American stand and bring these FATHERS AND MOTHERS home to their families and most of all their children. I attended the hearing on June 1, 2011 as I am a FAMM member also, I brought along my two daughters as I felt it was important for them to have an opportunity to feel they stood up for a good cause and in the line of battle for their father being released. 6months to a year early realease may not mean nothing to some but to my girls it will be a day they will NEVER forget. FAMM did a great job at the hearing as they put faces to the people that are fighting and brought it to the USSC attention as we stood and was identified and recognized before the board.

Posted by: Katrina Johnson | Jun 11, 2011 8:34:40 AM

I am a mother, who has two children that are in federal prison who are serving a minimum of thirty years and twelve years due to a crack cocaine offense in 2006 and 2007. Absolutely I believe that all Amendments should be retroactive. I believe this not only due to my connection with a prisoners currently involved in these circumstances but because it is a matter of plain and simple fairness. By the U.S. Sentencing Commission putting this change of the crack cocaine sentencing guidelines into action they admit to a flaw and/or unfair sentencing guidelines for crack cocaine offenders.

Posted by: pandora charms 2011 | Jun 18, 2011 10:59:24 PM

You posted extremely valuable article that for some reason you got my own interest to try this kind of out.

Posted by: Pandora Canada | Jun 19, 2011 11:07:46 PM

I am a sister, whose brother is a first time offender and has served 13 years of a 27 1/2 years sentence. I think the Admendment should be retroactive and apply to All offenders sentenced under the old crack law. I don't understand why it should apply to a certain group of offenders, being that it has been deemed unfair from the beginning. I asked that you give these people their lives back, so they can move forward with their families.

Posted by: Tonya Woods | Jul 1, 2011 2:41:36 PM

All amendments to the crack laws/unfair sentencing guidelines should be made retroactive to provide justice and equality to those who have been living out these unfair sentences. How can we call these changes just if we don't include all the amendments which were put in place to make these laws fair to begin with? All the amendments should apply to and benefit those who have been wronged. Justice is for everyone and not a select few. Fairness should not be determined by someone's sentencing date. My husband is serving a 27 1/2 year sentence for a first time non-violent offense which he commited before the age of 21. He has been serving this sentence for nearly 14 years now. How would it be fair for my husband and others in cases similar to his not be able to benefit from all amendments to this law? It is much easier for people to respect the laws when the laws are uniform to all people.

Posted by: Lorie Woods | Jul 1, 2011 2:47:45 PM

Yes,I think the new drug law should be retroactively.My son got 40years for selling drugs.He never has been in trouble with the law,he has already serve 4.I understand that selling drugs is wrong but give them some time.But not life,u get more time for selling drugs than you do for murder.

Posted by: chrissy brown | Jul 10, 2011 5:23:25 PM

There are no advantages to using drugs NONE. they will destroy YOUR life YOUR families life.
There are way to many disadvantages to say here. The number one thing is there is a great chance you will die by accident or not. if you know someone is having trouble with drugs try and get them some help

Posted by: DIY Super | Nov 23, 2011 9:07:39 PM

This flaw or act of infairness has been present before this amendment came into existance meaning that crack cocaine offenders have not been sentenced fairly sincethe crack cocaine sentencing guidelines came into exitence.

Posted by: Seo Package Deals | Mar 27, 2012 9:44:54 AM

The colors are so gorgeous Sandy! I am sure your quilt will be perfectly lovely! Wishing you a wonderful week! Angie xo

Posted by: Nike Brand Shoes | Aug 6, 2012 5:37:23 AM

This post is amazing and totally outstanding. Thanks again for sharing this post.

Posted by: californication leather jacket | Aug 31, 2012 3:35:34 AM

Some Chinese scholars have questioned the practical impact of these efforts. A November 16 South China Morning Post article cites Mao Shoulong, a political scientist at Renmin University, as noting that the white paper was mainly a response to overseas criticism, and that despite a rising number of non-Communists taking up government posts in recent years, there hasn't been any fundamental change in government leadership.

Posted by: Adidas Original Shoes | Sep 5, 2012 4:06:04 AM

Post a comment

In the body of your email, please indicate if you are a professor, student, prosecutor, defense attorney, etc. so I can gain a sense of who is reading my blog. Thank you, DAB