USA v. Joshua White
Per Curiam OPINION filed : White's sentence is AFFIRMED, decision not for publication. Eugene E. Siler , Jr., Deborah L. Cook, and Jane Branstetter Stranch, Circuit Judges.
NOT RECOMMENDED FOR FULL-TEXT PUBLICATION
File Name: 15a0293n.06
UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS
FOR THE SIXTH CIRCUIT
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,
JOSHUA ANTONIO-QUINN WHITE,
Apr 22, 2015
DEBORAH S. HUNT, Clerk
ON APPEAL FROM THE UNITED
STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR
THE WESTERN DISTRICT OF
BEFORE: SILER, COOK, and STRANCH, Circuit Judges.
PER CURIAM. Joshua Antonio-Quinn White appeals his sentence. White pleaded
guilty to possessing with intent to distribute heroin in violation of 21 U.S.C. § 841(a)(1). The
district court determined that, because he was a career offender, White’s total offense level was
31 and his criminal history category was VI, resulting in a guidelines range of 188 to 235
months’ imprisonment. White moved for a downward variance, arguing that the career-offender
guidelines range vastly overstated the seriousness of his criminal conduct and his two prior drug
convictions. The district court varied downward from the guidelines range and sentenced White
to 168 months in prison.
On appeal, White raises two arguments: (1) the sentence is procedurally unreasonable
because the district court failed to adequately explain why his arguments did not warrant a
greater downward variance; and (2) the sentence is substantively unreasonable because the
United States v. White
district court failed to properly take into account that he played only a minor role in the overall
drug distribution scheme and that his prior drug convictions were not serious crimes.
We generally review sentences under an abuse-of-discretion standard for reasonableness,
which has both a procedural and a substantive component. United States v. O’Georgia, 569 F.3d
281, 287 (6th Cir. 2009). We review White’s procedural claim for plain error only, however,
because he failed to specifically raise the objection when given the opportunity to do so by the
district court at the conclusion of the sentencing hearing. See United States v. Vonner, 516 F.3d
382, 386 (6th Cir. 2008) (en banc). A sentence may be substantively unreasonable if the district
court selects the sentence arbitrarily, fails to consider a pertinent sentencing factor, or gives
unreasonable weight to any sentencing factor. United States v. Vowell, 516 F.3d 503, 510 (6th
Cir. 2008). We apply a rebuttable presumption of substantive reasonableness to a withinguidelines sentence, Vonner, 516 F.3d at 389, and a defendant’s burden to demonstrate that a
below-guidelines sentence is unreasonable is even more demanding, United States v. Curry,
536 F.3d 571, 573 (6th Cir. 2008).
White has not shown that the district court committed plain procedural error in imposing
his sentence because the court’s reasons for the sentence are clear from the record. See United
States v. Petrus, 588 F.3d 347, 352–53 (6th Cir. 2009). The court explained that the career
offender guidelines were the proper starting point based on White’s prior convictions.
addition, the court explicitly acknowledged that it had considered White’s arguments for a
downward variance, and it adequately explained that the arguments warranted only a slight
variance given the importance of other sentencing factors such as the seriousness of the offense,
White’s significant criminal history, and the need to afford adequate deterrence, protect the
public, and provide just punishment.
United States v. White
White’s below-guidelines sentence is also substantively reasonable. Given the district
court’s discussion of the statutory sentencing factors and its consideration of White’s arguments
for a variance, the record does not reflect that the court selected White’s sentence arbitrarily or
failed to consider a pertinent sentencing factor. And nothing in the record suggests that the
district court gave unreasonable weight to any sentencing factor.
Accordingly, we affirm White’s sentence.
Disclaimer: Justia Dockets & Filings provides public litigation records from the federal appellate and district courts. These filings and docket sheets should not be considered findings of fact or liability, nor do they necessarily reflect the view of Justia.
Why Is My Information Online?