United States District Court, E.D. Kentucky, Central Division, Lexington
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
M. Hood Senior U.S. District Judge.
Christopher Holloway, a federal prisoner proceeding pro se,
moves for reconsideration of the Court's previous order,
which sua sponte denied Holloway a reduction of sentence
under the provisions of the First Step Act of 2018. [DE 128].
But as the Court has explained, and again reiterates, under
Sixth Circuit precedent, Holloways is ineligible for a
sentence reduction under the First Step Act due to his status
as a career offender. As a result, Holloway's motion to
reconsider [DE 128] is DENIED.
jury trial, Holloway was found guilty of possession with
intent to distribute cocaine base (“crack”
cocaine) and being a felon in possession of a firearm. [DE
58, Jury Verdict; DE 67, Judgment]. In December 2005,
Holloway was sentenced to a total term of imprisonment of 262
months, to be followed by a four-year term of supervised
release. [DE 67]. Holloway's sentence was based on
Holloway's status as a career offender pursuant to
U.S.S.G. § 4B1.1, not the guidelines ranges in U.S.S.G.
§ 2D1.1, which are based on drug quantity. [DE 67; DE
77, Transcript of Sentencing Proceeding at 7, Pg ID 517].
Sixth Circuit confirmed the conviction and sentence on direct
appeal. Holloway has also filed multiple petitions for habeas
relief and has moved for reductions of sentence.
the Court received a list of prisoners that may be eligible
for a reduction of sentence under the First Step Act and
ordered that the United States Probation Office review the
listed cases and issue a report. [DE 124]. Subsequently, the
Court reviewed the report from the United States Probation
Office, and Holloway's case generally, and entered a sua
sponte denial of a reduction of sentence based on
Holloway's status as a career offender. [DE 125].
Holloway moved for resentencing based on the First Step Act
[DE 127], which the Court denied for the same reason, based
on Holloway's sentencing as a career offender [DE 127].
Now, Holloway has moved for a motion for reconsideration of
the Court's previous sua sponte denial of a sentence
reduction based on the First Step Act. [DE 128]. This matter
is ripe for review.
December 21, 2018, the First Step Act of 2018, Pub. L. No.
115-391, 132 Stat. 5194, was signed into law. Among other
reforms, Section 404 of the First Step Act retroactively
applies certain sentencing reform provisions of the Fair
Sentencing Act of 2010, Pub. L. No. 111-220, 124 Stat. 2372
(“FSA”). Specifically, the First Step Act
retroactively applies the reduced statutory penalties for
cocaine base (“crack” cocaine) offenses in the
FSA to “covered offenses” committed before August
court that imposed a sentence for a covered offense may
impose a sentence as if the FSA were in effect at the time
the covered offense was committed. This reduction in sentence
may be made by the court on its own or on a motion of the
defendant, the Director of the Bureau of Prisons, or an
attorney for the United States.
argues that his sentence may be reduced even though he was
sentenced as a career offender, arguing that the drug
quantity calculation is relevant to the statutory maximum
penalty, which is in turn relevant to calculation of the
total offense level under U.S.S.G. § 4B1.1.
Alternatively, Holloways proposes that his sentence could be
calculated under U.S.S.G. § 2D1.1, without the career
18 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(2), a defendant is eligible for a
sentence reduction if: (1) the defendant has been sentenced
to a term of imprisonment based on a sentencing range that
has subsequently been lowered by the Sentencing Commission;
and (2) such reduction is consistent with applicable policy
statements issued by the Sentencing Commission.”
United States v. Riley, 726 F.3d 756, 758 (6th Cir.
2013) (internal citations and quotation omitted). To satisfy
the second requirement, “a guidelines amendment must
have the effect of lowering the defendant's applicable
guideline range.” Id. (internal citations and
Holloway's second argument is completely without merit.
Holloway was eligible for and sentenced based on his status
as a career offender under U.S.S.G. § 4B1.1. The Court
will not go back, over thirteen years after Holloway was
sentenced, and resentence Holloway under U.S.S.G. §
Holloway's first argument, that he is eligible for a
sentence reduction under the First Step Act notwithstanding
his sentencing status as a career offender, has been
foreclosed by the Sixth Circuit. In Riley, the Sixth
Circuit addressed whether prisoners sentenced as career
offenders were eligible for a sentence reduction under the
Fair Sentencing Act and held that those sentenced as career
offenders under U.S.S.G. § 4B1.1 were not eligible