Montgomery v. USA-2255
MEMORANDUM OPINION. Signed by Judge Catherine C. Blake on 12/4/2017. (kw2s, Deputy Clerk)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF MARYLAND
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
: CIVIL NO. CCB-17-445
: Criminal No. CCB-15-0468
Federal prison inmate Jeremy Montgomery has filed a timely motion to vacate his
sentence under 28 U.S.C. § 2255. The government has responded, and no evidentiary hearing is
necessary. The motion will be denied for the reasons explained below.
Montgomery was indicted on multiple counts including a conspiracy to distribute crack
cocaine (Count One) and possession of firearms in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime (Count
Nineteen). On June 21, 2016, he pled guilty to Count Nineteen pursuant to Fed. R. Crim. P.
11(c)(1)(C), with both parties recommending a sentence of 12 years. At his request, the court
proceeded to sentencing immediately after the Rule 11 hearing, and imposed the agreed-on
In his motion to vacate, Montgomery argues his counsel was ineffective for several
reasons, none of which have merit. As the government’s response and the attached transcript of
the plea colloquy and sentencing demonstrate, Montgomery was well-represented by his
experienced counsel, Andrew White. First, the record shows that Montgomery voluntarily
admitted to the facts necessary to establish his guilt, including his commission of the Count One
conspiracy involving 280 grams or more of cocaine base. Accordingly, his counsel had no basis
to object to an offense level of 30. Second, had Montgomery not accepted the plea offer
negotiated by Mr. White, but rather been convicted after trial, he faced a likely minimum of 15
years and could have received more. Third, the decision in Johnson v. United States, 135 S. Ct.
2551 (2015), has no applicability to Montgomery’s conviction or sentence, and counsel was not
ineffective for failing to file a Johnson motion.
To succeed on his motion, Montgomery is required to show “a reasonable probability
that, but for counsel’s errors, he would not have pleaded guilty and would have insisted on going
to trial.” Hill v. Lockhart, 474 U.S. 52, 59 (1985). Montgomery has shown neither error by Mr.
White nor any reasonable probability he would have gone to trial. Accordingly, the motion will
be denied. There is no basis for a certificate of appealability.
A separate Order follows.
December 4, 2017
Catherine C. Blake
United States District Judge
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?