USA v. Raymondo Acuna
UNPUBLISHED OPINION FILED. [16-11225 Affirmed ] Judge: JLW , Judge: JLD , Judge: LHS Mandate issue date is 11/21/2017 for Appellant Raymondo Acuna [16-11225]
Date Filed: 10/30/2017
IN THE UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS
FOR THE FIFTH CIRCUIT
United States Court of Appeals
October 30, 2017
Lyle W. Cayce
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,
RAYMONDO ACUNA, also known as Raymond Acuna,
Appeal from the United States District Court
for the Northern District of Texas
USDC No. 4:16-CR-21-14
Before WIENER, DENNIS, and SOUTHWICK, Circuit Judges.
PER CURIAM: *
Raymondo Acuna appeals his above-guidelines prison sentence for
possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance. He argues that his
sentence violates the Eighth Amendment because the sentence is grossly
disproportionate to the seriousness of his crime of conviction and thus
constitutes cruel and unusual punishment. We review his constitutional claim
de novo. United States v. Romero-Cruz, 201 F.3d 374, 377 (5th Cir. 2000).
Pursuant to 5TH CIR. R. 47.5, the court has determined that this opinion should not
be published and is not precedent except under the limited circumstances set forth in 5TH
CIR. R. 47.5.4.
Date Filed: 10/30/2017
Acuna’s assertion that his sentence violates the Eighth Amendment’s
prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment is without merit.
Eighth Amendment prohibits a sentence that is grossly disproportionate to the
severity of the crime for which it is imposed. Solem v. Helm, 463 U.S. 277, 288
(1983). When evaluating an Eighth Amendment proportionality challenge, we
make a threshold comparison between the gravity of the charged offense and
the severity of the sentence. McGruder v. Puckett, 954 F.2d 313, 315 (5th Cir.
1992). We look to Rummel v. Estelle, 445 U.S. 263 (1980), as a benchmark.
United States v. Gonzales, 121 F.3d 928, 943 (5th Cir. 1997), abrogated on other
grounds by United States v. O’Brien, 560 U.S. 218 (2010).
The 200-month prison sentence is not grossly disproportionate to the
severity of Acuna’s drug offense when measured against the benchmark in
Rummel. See 445 U.S. at 284–85. Accordingly, Acuna’s Eighth Amendment
claim fails. See McGruder, 954 F.2d at 315–17.
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