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May 20, 2005

More district court action on crack/cocaine disparity

As detailed in a series of prior posts (here and here and here), Booker has breathed new life into the debate over crack/powder cocaine sentencing in the federal system.  And, thanks to this helpful post on this important issue at the PRACDL Blog, I see that the recent decision of US District Judge Ronnie Greer in US v. Clay, Cr. No. 03-73 (E.D.Tenn. May 6, 2005) (available here), should be added to the list of opinions that examine the crack/powder ratio and address concerns with the aid of post-Booker authority.

Judge Greer's conclusions in Clay nicely summarize the important work done in the opinion:

Taking all the foregoing factors into consideration, and taking into consideration the congressional mandate that sentences for crack offenses be stiffer than for cocaine offenses, the Court FINDS that the following factors outweigh the significant weight this Court has determined to give to the sentencing guidelines advisory range (regardless of whether this Court considers the range to be 235 to 293 months [based on judicial fact-finding] or 188 to 235 months [based on jury fact-finding] ).

1.  The defendant's history and characteristics as set forth above;
2.  His criminal history category which over states his criminal history and weighs in his favor against the likelihood that he will commit another offense;
3.  The fact that he withdrew from the conspiracy and led a productive life for one year prior to his arrest in this case weighs in his favor against the likelihood that he will commit another offense; and
4.  The unjustified disparity in the 100:1 quality ratio for punishment between cocaine base or crack and powder cocaine.

Based on a careful consideration of all the factors listed in 18 U.S.C. § 3553(a), the Court FINDS that a reasonable sentence for this defendant is one hundred and fifty-six (156) months on each count to run concurrently, a sentence that is sufficient, but not greater than necessary, to serve the purpose of sentencing established by the Congress.  The Court specifically FINDS that a sentence of 156 months provides substantial and appropriate deterrence to those contemplating this offense, promotes respect for the law and provides just punishment based on the defendant’s conduct.

May 20, 2005 at 03:25 PM | Permalink


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Todd or Camille Gibson
4445 B. Breton Rd. SE #214
Kentwood, MI 49508-4711
Phone: 616-827-9362
http://www.crackcocainerecovery.com or http://www.devilscandy.com
todd@crackcocainerecovery.com or camille@crackcocainerecovery.com

Grand Rapids Michigan Couple Attacks Crack with a Vengeance

USA, Grand Rapids, Michigan- Don’t know anything about crack cocaine? You should learn. Todd and Camille Gibson are on a mission to expose the truth about crack cocaine. Todd who had a 10 year everyday addiction to crack cocaine is now 8 years free and has a ministry to help others conquer their crack cocaine addiction forever. Camille who in the beginning had no clue what crack cocaine was now spends her free time counseling the loved ones of crack addicts when she is not attending to the couples 3 young daughters.

“We run our ministry from the basement of our home”, states Camille. “Yes, we help hundreds of people all over the world who are devastated by crack use. “I was in the revolving doors of crime, crack, jail and treatment for 10 years, never having the hope of ever breaking free from the grip crack cocaine had on me”, Todd speaks tearfully. Todd continues to say, “I have found freedom and want every person addicted to crack cocaine to know that there is hope through our ministry. There is true freedom from crack cocaine and a wonderful life that follows once a person conquers their addiction to crack cocaine”.

Todd and Camille have 13 beliefs instead of the traditional 12 steps or clinical textbook ways of beating crack addiction. “These programs have their place, but from our experience we have yet to see them work in maintaining sobriety from crack cocaine. Our belief number one is, ‘We believe in each success not every failure’. We only deal with crack cocaine because there is nothing like crack. Oh, every addiction has its problems but crack, well crack is destroying our world as we know it and no one is taking it seriously”, Camille mentions.

Todd and Camille believe one of the best tools in conquering crack cocaine addiction is to expose all the crack lies, followed by educating yourself as to what crack cocaine is, how it works and how to fight it if you are addicted. There are many famous actors addicted to crack; even our Presidents niece has crack cocaine problems. “It’s everywhere. We help people in America, London, Africa, Iraq, Japan, Iceland, Canada; you name the place and we have had someone from there contact our ministry desperately seeking help. We know our program works when you work it. It has not failed me and it will not fail you”, Todd declares.

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For more information about Todd and Camille’s Ministry, crack cocaine addiction and how to conquer crack addiction log on to http://www.crackcocainerecovery.com or
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Posted by: Camille Gibson | Jul 2, 2006 12:08:43 PM

Having spent time in Judge Greer's court room, I would like to ask why he allowed a crack cocaine dealer and manufacturer to go free after a raid on his home resulted in this man trying to run over an FBI agent. The agent shot this man in the leg, the Asst Fed Proscutor, Neil Smith met with this man under a tree at the Cracker Barrel to help him in proscuting a man who refused to wear a wire for them. Another man used by the government as a witness had also been caught a few days prior to this man and was found to hve drugs on him as well.. Both were set free if they would testify aganist this man..
Judge Greer is a joke in his own robe..Should hang a Kangaroo Seal over his head instead of the US Seal.. A true disgrace to our judicial system..He allows purgery, lies and finds people guilty in his courtroom even though a jury finds them not guilty. Guess he has to make Neil Smith look smart and put some news in the paper. I elieve he has really been showing his true colors lately..

Posted by: | Jun 14, 2007 10:44:11 PM

Why did Judge Greer give Lynn Phillips less than 5 years for selling 100's of kilos of cocaine and only fining him $100.00. He also allowed him to keep all his proceeds from his sales. This man was a school bus driver and the trial proved that drug deals went on at the school bus garage..
Judge Greer's other big disgrace was giving Chris Shults less than 8 years for selling over 80 Kilos of cocaine while working for the federal government. This man was fined $100.00 and was allowed to keep his profits from the sales..The 80 kilos sold while working for the government was nothing compared to what was sold prior to getting caught and becoming a snitch...To top off the deal, Chris Shults was not allowed to testify for the government because he was busted again and workink for the FBI..

Some government we have folks..Thank Judge Greer, Neil Smith and Tom Ferrel for their drug dealers and how easy they mke it to roam the streets again to sell more to our children...

Posted by: | Jun 14, 2007 10:55:16 PM

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Posted by: | Oct 14, 2008 10:20:38 AM

This argument to equalize the punishment is totally ridiculous, and I’m already tired of reading about it-that law need not be changed! The fact that crack is cheap and therefore more available to the poor has nothing to do with it because crack is highly addictive to the rich and the poor alike, so poor people just need to find a new way to make $ without getting everyone hooked on super-addictive drugs for god’s sake! I know which one is more addictive because I’ve tried them, and I hate coke! When you hit crack you go str8 to that heavenly whole body orgasm in like ten seconds and IMMEDIATELY want more and badly as it takes you to the same place a lot faster than coke, so of course it is more addictive! I’m enraged by people who argue that just because black people aren’t as likely to actually use crack and are more likely to get busted selling it (or having it for an unknown reason-their case somehow merely “involves” crack-stupid defense), they don’t deserve any harsh punishments. They won’t taste their own medicine because they’d rather use addicts, who are willing to pay their outrageous prices, for $ and power! Why not contrast this idea with the one that Mexico had about why they should legalize small amounts of marijuana, cocaine, and heroine for personal use. They did that because they didn’t want to continue to fill their jails with “people who have these addictions”. In the same way, people who are busted with possessing coke or small amounts of crack for personal use in the USA may be offered rehab as part of a deferral program to help with their addiction because they are prone to use (5 grams is NOT a small amount of crack for personal use). But then we have these non-using, black, crack dealers! They don’t get involved with crack because they have a substance abuse problem at all as half of them have never used it in their whole life; they only get involved with crack because they don’t wanna work, and they wanna make free $ on the black market even though they know that it could be at the expense of their own freedom! They actually DECIDE to do that in spite of the well-known consequences. They’re too smart to be foolish enough to use the addictive substance, but the truth is they’re not smart enough to keep from getting set up and sent to prison for life for selling it to criminal informants like myself. They just need to go to jail for trying to mess everyone up for free $! And I think that the fact that they don’t use makes their involvement with the substance less understandable and not more so! If the punishment for crack is so bad, why don’t they just stop selling crack? Most white people find other, more productive, ways to make a living as they are less likely get caught in that net of justice because crack is an extremely addictive drug that is dangerous to get busted screwing around with and for good reason! They’re always getting busted with it, yet statistics show they don’t use it as much. So it’s laughable to suggest that they should be offered any chance of drug treatment instead of prison. That will not fix them-they are sick, lazy people looking for any easy way OUT and using a hard substance that often ends up being an easy way IN to some hard time! It’s not racial disparity; it’s a disparity for fools!

Posted by: Metalfreiza | Jan 17, 2010 1:49:49 PM

Poor soul, again equality is the word for the day you reject. All we are saying is lets start playing on a even field. If a "white american" gets 20 days for distribution then a African american should receive the same.Thats all!I will prey for you child.

Posted by: britnie | Jul 29, 2010 1:48:43 PM

wow......great article......well written......i appreciate with your work. ..If you’re an adult in a terrible situation, you have to figure a way out of it because impossible is nothing. Addictions happen mostly because people don’t work out their problems from the start of them. An unhappy husband or wife nowadays rather popping pills than to confront his/her marital/financial/other problems. It may seem like the easier way out, but they forget that they will eventually sober up and the problems will still be the same.

Posted by: Cocaine Addiction | May 25, 2011 12:38:55 AM

Women can succumb to drug addiction just as men can. However, men and women experience drug use and drug addiction differently, and not only because of their genders. When talking about women and drug addiction it is important to understand the social positions of women, their daily routines, responsibilities and mental state. Women are mothers and carers, so their drug addiction affects their children and their families in ways that are far-reaching for the next generation.

Posted by: Women and Drug Addiction | Jun 3, 2011 7:11:34 AM

As a former addict, I think jail time is the worst possible thing you could do to an addict, unless they're committing other crimes to get their drugs. Sending a user to prison results in a hardened criminal user being released years later with little hope of leading a meaningful life. Help is what addicts need, not a criminal record...

Posted by: renewable energy | Aug 23, 2011 1:25:37 AM

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