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Defendant Appeals for Sentencing Reduction

The plaintiff and appellee in the case is the United States of America. The defendant and appellant of the case is Felicia Monique Dunn. The case is being heard in the fifth circuit of the United States Court of Appeals.


A New York DWI Lawyer said Felicia Monique Dunn is appealing her sentence for possessing cocaine with the objective to distribute. She also was charged with aiding and abetting cocaine. Her reason for appeal is that there were two shoplifting convictions that were used to add to her sentence. Under guidelines for sentencing she states that a lower enhancement is necessary as both the offenses occurred at different stores located in the same mall during roughly the same time frame and were heard in the same court with the same pleas and sentences that were concurrent.

Original Case

In a plea agreement, Felicia Dunn made a plea of guilty to possessing of cocaine and the intent to dispense cocaine. A New York DWI Lawyer said the report submitted for presentencing recommended the offense level of 25 after a reduction of three levels. Eleven criminal points were added, resulting in a category V criminal history level. This resulted in a sentencing of 100 to 125 months in prison.

Felicia Dunn argued the presentencing report, stating that she should receive a two point level reduction in regard to the shop lifting cases. She was given four criminal history points based on the offenses of shop lifting. She stated that she should have only received two points for these offenses because they happened on the same day and they are “related” cases and under the guidelines for sentencing should only result in two points.

Shoplifting Case Facts

On the 17th of March in 1994, Felicia Dunn was arrested for shoplifting. This occurred in the Post Oak Mall located in College Station. The store that accused her of shoplifting was the Limited, a clothing store. An investigation that followed found that there were three other stores that she had taken items from. However, only the Limited as well as one other store pressed charges against her. A Nassau County DWI Lawyer said she was charged on two separate counts of shoplifting, with two separate complaints, and two cause numbers that were sequential. She received sentencing for both of the crimes on the same day. The sentences were identical and ran concurrently.

Case Discussion

When sentencing for the present case was granted, the district court provided a two level reduction for her minor role in the offenses. However, Dunn stated that she should receive two more points in the deduction based on the relation of the shop lifting incidents. The district court overruled Dunn’s objections, stating that there was another case where a person committed burglaries in two buildings that were adjoined and it was considered separate offenses and this is no different.

Court Decision

In the sentencing guidelines it is clearly stated that each separate offense should be counted as such. However, if prior sentences are imposed in cases that are related, then the case should only be treated as a single sentence when used for the purpose of assigning points for criminal history. For this reason, we find in favor of the appellant and we vacate the original order and sentencing and remand the previous court to resentence in this case.

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