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United States of America v. Clarence Ward

December 12, 2011

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, PLAINTIFF,
v.
CLARENCE WARD, DEFENDANT.



ORDER DENYING DEFENDANT'S MOTION FOR MODIFICATION OF SENTENCE

THIS CAUSE is before the Court on Defendant Clarence Ward's Motion for Modification of Sentence Pursuant to Title 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(2) [DE 96]. The Court has considered the motion, the Government's response [DE 100], and is otherwise fully advised in the premises.*fn1

Mr. Ward maintains entitlement to a sentence reduction pursuant to Amendment 750 to the United States Sentencing Guidelines. Amendment 750 became effective on November 1, 2011. The Amendment adjusted cocaine base amounts in § 2D1.1 to limit the disparity between powder cocaine and cocaine base. The Amendment was given retroactive effect.

Mr. Ward was charged in a five-count Superseding Indictment with felon in possession of a firearm and four counts of possession with the intent to distribute crack (base) cocaine. Prior to trial, the Government filed notice pursuant to Title 21, United States Code, Section 851, of intent to rely on the Defendant's prior felony drug convictions to enhance the Defendant's sentence to a mandatory minimum of life imprisonment. Following a jury trial, Mr. Ward was found guilty of all counts. The Court determined Mr. Ward to be a career criminal offender with an offense level of 37, a criminal history category of VI, and a guideline imprisonment range of 360 months to life. The Court sentenced Mr. Ward to life imprisonment on Count One and concurrent terms of 360 months on Counts Two through Four. Since Mr. Ward was sentenced to a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment and classified as a career offender, application of Amendment 750, part A, will not reduce the sentencing ranges applicable to him. The Sentencing Commission has no authority to alter a statutory mandatory penalty. Accordingly, it is thereupon

ORDERED AND ADJUDGED that Defendant Clarence Ward's Motion for Modification of Sentence Pursuant to Title 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(2) [DE 96] is DENIED.

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