US v. Alexander Robbin


UNPUBLISHED PER CURIAM OPINION filed. Originating case number: 7:14-cr-00025-FL-1 Copies to all parties and the district court/agency. [999634723].. [14-4783]

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Appeal: 14-4783 Doc: 39 Filed: 08/05/2015 Pg: 1 of 5 UNPUBLISHED UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE FOURTH CIRCUIT No. 14-4783 UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff - Appellee, v. ALEXANDER ROBBINS, Defendant - Appellant. Appeal from the United States District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina, at Wilmington. Louise W. Flanagan, District Judge. (7:14-cr-00025-FL-1) Submitted: June 29, 2015 Decided: August 5, 2015 Before SHEDD, DIAZ, and THACKER, Circuit Judges. Affirmed by unpublished per curiam opinion. Thomas P. McNamara, Federal Public Defender, Eric J. Brignac, Assistant Federal Public Defender, Raleigh, North Carolina, for Appellant. Thomas G. Walker, United States Attorney, Jennifer P. May-Parker, Phillip A. Rubin, Assistant United States Attorneys, Raleigh, North Carolina, for Appellee. Unpublished opinions are not binding precedent in this circuit. Appeal: 14-4783 Doc: 39 Filed: 08/05/2015 Pg: 2 of 5 PER CURIAM: Alexander Robbins challenges the substantive reasonableness of the 71-month sentence imposed by the district court following his conviction, pursuant to a guilty plea, for knowingly possessing a firearm and ammunition as a felon, in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 922(g)(1), 924(a)(2) (2012). In imposing the sentence, the district court departed upward from the Sentencing Guidelines category range, concluding “substantially that Robbins’ underrepresent[ed] criminal the history seriousness of [his] criminal history or the likelihood that [he] will commit other crimes.” (2013). U.S. Sentencing Guidelines Manual § 4A1.3, p.s. We affirm. We review deferential a sentence for abuse-of-discretion States, 552 U.S. 38, 41 (2007). does not attention assert to the reasonableness, standard.” applying Gall v. “a United Where, as here, the defendant procedural sentencing error, substantive reasonableness of we turn the sentence, “take[] into account the totality of the circumstances,” our id., at 51, and consider “whether the sentencing court abused its discretion in concluding that the sentence it chose satisfied the standards set forth in [18 U.S.C.] § 3553(a) [(2012)],” United States v. Gomez-Jimenez, 750 F.3d 370, 383 (4th Cir.) (internal quotation marks omitted), cert. denied, 135 S. Ct. 305 (2014), and cert. denied, 135 S. Ct. 384 (2014). 2 “An appellate Appeal: 14-4783 Doc: 39 Filed: 08/05/2015 Pg: 3 of 5 court owes ‘due deference’ to a district court’s assessment of the § 3553(a) factors, and mere disagreement with the sentence below is court.’” ‘insufficient to justify reversal of the district United States v. Howard, 773 F.3d 519, 531 (4th Cir. 2014) (quoting Gall, 552 U.S. at 51); see id. at 529 n.8; see also Gall, 552 U.S. at 51-52. Robbins first contends that the district court abused its discretion by upwardly departing under § 4A1.3, p.s., because his criminal misdemeanor offenses. included history, though convictions, not We note, numerous lengthy, violent however, that misdemeanor primarily felonies Robbins’ included or firearm criminal convictions for history assaultive behavior and for crimes against property and a felony conviction for possession of a firearm as a felon — all of which received no criminal history points. p.s., prevented the Nothing in the language of § 4A1.3, district court from relying on these unscored convictions, and we conclude that it did not abuse its discretion by doing so. Second, Robbins argues that his departure sentence creates unwarranted sentencing disparities between him and those who have been convicted under § 922(g)(1) and have received withinGuidelines sentences after being accorded the same total offense level and criminal history category as Robbins. On the contrary, we conclude that the Sentencing Commission’s adoption 3 Appeal: 14-4783 Doc: 39 Filed: 08/05/2015 Pg: 4 of 5 of the § 4A1.3, p.s., departure renders the resulting sentencing disparity between warranted. 54. Robbins and his putative comparators See 18 U.S.C. § 3553(a)(6); cf. Gall, 552 U.S. at Although a sentencing disparity based on a § 4A1.3, p.s., departure might be unwarranted inappropriately applied, itself, be cannot the grounds if imposition for the of concluding the that departure is departure, by the resulting disparity is unwarranted. Next, Robbins contends that the district court’s rationale for imposing its sentence was unreasonable because his criminal history shows he was predominantly a drug user and not in the habit of using firearms as part of his criminal conduct and that, therefore, he presented a danger to himself more than to the public. See 18 U.S.C. § 3553(a)(2)(C). Robbins’ characterization of his criminal history is deeply flawed. As the district court noted, his convictions exhibit a pattern of assaulting others, injuring their property, and placing their safety at risk regulations. by his criminal disregard for motor vehicle His claim that he has generally, but not always, refrained from using a firearm while engaging in conduct that harms or endangers the public is largely irrelevant. event, the sentencing violently language court’s harms the of § 3553(a)(2)(C) consideration public, and 4 to the does not criminal possession In any limit conduct and the that use of Appeal: 14-4783 Doc: 39 illicit Filed: 08/05/2015 drugs are by no Pg: 5 of 5 means harmless to society. See Harmelin v. Michigan, 501 U.S. 957, 1002-03 (1991) (Kennedy, J., concurring). Finally, sentence was deterrence Robbins unreasonable when irrationally, punishment. contends is he, not as that the it relied because a drug amenable district addict to the on the need compelled deterrent See 18 U.S.C. § 3553(a)(2)(B). court’s for to act effect of We have found no case in which a court of appeals has concluded that deterrence is an inappropriate sentencing factor on the ground that the defendant is a drug addict, and Robbins points to none. Moreover, we note that Robbins’ reasoning appears to be at odds with the conclusions reached by the Supreme Court in Powell v. Texas, 392 U.S. 514 (1968). Because Robbins has offered no meritorious reason why we should not defer to the district court’s judgment, we conclude that the sentence reasonable. judgment. legal before imposed Accordingly, on we Robbins affirm the is substantively district court’s We dispense with oral argument because the facts and contentions this court are adequately and argument presented would not in aid the the materials decisional process. AFFIRMED 5

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