Tenth Circuit - First Step Act of 2018

United States v. Mannie, 971 F.3d 1145 (10th Cir. 2020). A defendant serving concurrent, coextensive sentences for offenses covered and not covered by the First Step Act, lacks standing to bring a §404(b) motion unless the court has another mechanism for reducing the sentences on the non-covered offenses. Appellate courts review discretionary denials of § 404(b) motions for abuse of discretion. A district court may, but is not required, to hold a hearing on a § 404(b) motion.

United States v. Brown, 974 F.3d 1137 (10th Cir. 2020). Section 404(b) of the First Step Act, which permits a court to impose a reduced sentence for a covered offense, does not permit plenary resentencing and thus does not allow a court to recalculate the Guidelines range. The FSA, however, allows a court “to at least consider” subsequent decisions clarifying, as opposed to amending, the Guidelines.

United States v. McGee, 992 F.3d 1035 (10th Cir. 2021). The Commission’s policy statement at §1B1.13 does not apply to motions for compassionate release filed by defendants. Nonretroactive penalty reductions, combined with a defendant’s unique circumstances, can constitute extraordinary and compelling reasons.

United States v. Crooks, 997 F.3d 1273 (10th Cir. 2021). Section 404(b) eligibility depends on the statute of conviction, not the defendant’s actual conduct.

United States v. Crooks, 997 F.3d 1273 (10th Cir. 2021). The court may review the defendant’s career-offender status when ruling on a § 404(b) motion. Here, the career offender designation at the original sentencing was erroneous.

United States v. Broadway, 1 F.4th 1206 (10th Cir. 2021). The offense of conviction, not the drug quantity in the underlying conduct, is used to determine whether a defendant is eligible for a sentencing reduction under section 404 of the First Step Act. A court may consider the quantity of drugs involved during its analysis of the 18 U.S.C. § 3553(a) factors, or in exercising its discretion as to whether to reduce a sentence.

United States v. Hald, 8 F.4th 932 (10th Cir. 2021). A court may deny compassionate release based on the § 3553(a) factors without examining whether extraordinary and compelling reasons warrant relief.

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