United States v. Tony Denson (11th Cir. June 2020)

The Federal Docket

July 7, 2020

Sentencing/Reductions – The district court is not required to hold a hearing prior to reducing a defendant’s sentence under the First Step Act’s retroactive penalties for crack-cocaine.

Tony Denson filed a motion requesting a sentence reduction for his crack cocaine conviction pursuant to the First Step Act and 18 U.S.C. 3582(c)(1)(B). The Court reduced his sentence without a hearing.

On appeal, the Court affirmed and held that the district court did not err by declining to conduct a hearing, noting that the Fifth Circuit and Eigth Circuit had already decided the same. The Court concluded that neither the statute nor the due process clause required a hearing.

Appeal from the Northern District of Florida

Opinion by Hull, joined by Grant and Luck

Click here to read the opinion.

Tom Church - Tom is a trial and appellate lawyer focusing on criminal defense and civil trials. Tom is the author of "The Federal Docket" and is a contributor to Mercer Law Review's Annual Survey in the areas of federal sentencing guidelines and criminal law. Tom graduated with honors from the University of Georgia Law School where he served as a research assistant to the faculty in the areas of constitutional law and civil rights litigation. Read Tom's reviews on AVVO. Follow Tom on Linkedin.

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