US v. Walter Early
UNPUBLISHED PER CURIAM OPINION filed. Originating case number: 1:13-cr-00076-WO-1 Copies to all parties and the district court/agency. .. [16-4570]
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UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS
FOR THE FOURTH CIRCUIT
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,
Plaintiff - Appellee,
WALTER LEE EARLY,
Defendant - Appellant.
Appeal from the United States District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina, at
Greensboro. William L. Osteen, Jr., Chief District Judge. (1:13-cr-00076-WO-1)
Submitted: May 30, 2017
Decided: June 8, 2017
Before GREGORY, Chief Judge, and WILKINSON and MOTZ, Circuit Judges.
Affirmed by unpublished per curiam opinion.
Craig M. Cooley, COOLEY LAW OFFICE, Cary, North Carolina, for Appellant. Sandra
J. Hairston, Acting United States Attorney, Robert M. Hamilton, Assistant United States
Attorney, Greensboro, North Carolina, for Appellee.
Unpublished opinions are not binding precedent in this circuit.
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Walter Lee Early appeals the district court’s judgment revoking his supervised
release and sentencing him to 12 months’ imprisonment and a subsequent term of 24
months’ supervised release. Early contends that insufficient evidence supported the court’s
finding that Early violated a condition of supervised release. We affirm.
A court may revoke supervised release if it “finds by a preponderance of the
evidence that the defendant violated a condition of supervised release.”
§ 3583(e)(3) (2012).
“We review a district court’s ultimate decision to revoke a
defendant’s supervised release for abuse of discretion” and its “factual findings underlying
a revocation for clear error.” United States v. Padgett, 788 F.3d 370, 373 (4th Cir.), cert.
denied, 136 S. Ct. 494 (2015); see United States v. Alvarado, 840 F.3d 184, 189 (4th Cir.
2016) (providing standard for abuse of discretion).
The district court found by a preponderance of the evidence that Early violated his
supervised release by committing an affray or, alternatively, an assault, in violation of N.C.
Gen. Stat. § 14-33(a) (2015). In his opening brief, Early challenges only the court’s affray
finding. Although Early’s reply brief also challenges the court’s assault finding, “generally
we will not consider issues raised for the first time in a reply brief.” United States v.
Copeland, 707 F.3d 522, 530 (4th Cir. 2013). Moreover, the record clearly establishes by
a preponderance of the evidence that Early engaged in an assault, thereby violating a
condition of supervised release. Thus, we need not address the affray issue in order to
conclude that revocation was not an abuse of the court’s discretion.
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Accordingly, we affirm the district court’s revocation judgment. We dispense with
oral argument because the facts and legal contentions are adequately presented in the
materials before this court and argument would not aid the decisional process.
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