Currently Browsing:Fourth Circuit Decision

Fourth Circuit OK’s Conviction & Sentence in Maryland Bank Fraud Conspiracy

US v. Junaidu Savage (No. 16-4704) A federal grand jury for the District of Maryland indicted Junaidu Savage for bank fraud conspiracy, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1349 (Count One), and aggravated identity theft, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1028A (Counts Two and Three). The Government alleged that Savage and others devised a scheme to

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Fourth Circuit: Traffic Stop Violated Defendant’s Fourth Amendment Rights, Conviction Reversed

U.S. v. Brian Bowman (No. 16-4848) Brian Bowman appeals the district court’s denial of his motion to suppress evidence recovered from a dog sniff conducted after an already-completed traffic stop. The Fourth Circuit concludes that the police officer had neither Bowman’s consent to extend the traffic stop nor a reasonable, articulable suspicion of ongoing criminal activity

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4th Circuit: SC Involuntary Manslaughter Not a “Violent Felony” Per the ACCA

U.S. v. Jenaro Middleton (No. 16-7556) Jarnaro Carlos Middleton was sentenced as an armed career criminal pursuant to the Armed Career Criminal Act (ACCA), 18 U.S.C. § 924(e). On appeal, Middleton challenges the district court’s determination that his prior conviction for South Carolina involuntary manslaughter qualifies as a violent felony under the ACCA. Applying the

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Fourth Circuit Affirms Crooked Cop’s Conviction in WV

United States v. Mark Cowden (No. 17-4046) Cowden, a former lieutenant with the Hancock County Sheriff’s Office in West Virginia, was charged with several federal crimes in connection with his assault on Ryan Hamrick. Evidence at trial showed that during a traffic stop, Ryan Hamrick resisted another officer’s attempt to place him under arrest. In

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Fourth Circuit: NC Voluntary Manslaughter is a Violent Felony Per the ACCA

United States v. Antoine Darrell Smith (No. 17-4015) Smith pled guilty to one count of PWID cocaine, and one count of possession of ammunition by a convicted felon. Smith’s PSI indicated that he was subject to enhanced penalties under the ACCA, due in part to his North Carolina conviction for voluntary manslaughter. Smith argued that

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Fourth Circuit Affirms Convictions in Child Pornography Case

United States v. Miltier (No. 16-4729) This case stems from a 2013 FBI investigation, during which images of child pornography were downloaded from an IP address allegedly assigned to Miltier. A search warrant was executed at Miltier’s home, and a forensic review of his laptop and a flash drive revealed child pornography. Both devices were

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Fourth Circuit Ducks Tough Questions in Online Tracking Case; OK’s FBI’s Use of Malware to Track Darkweb Users

US v. Robert McLamb (No. 17-4299) McLamb challenges the district court’s order denying his motion to suppress evidence of child pornography contained on a hard drive recovered at his home. The FBI obtained the evidence in the course of its investigation of a child pornography website called “Playpen,” a hidden services message board located on

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Fourth Circuit Cracks Down on Tardy Filings in Pair of Opinions

United States v. Oliver (No. 15-4376) In Oliver, the Fourth Circuit addressed the Court’s authority to dismiss a criminal appeal as untimely sua sponte. Oliver filed his appeal nearly three months after the denial of his §2255 petition, and several years after his actual conviction. The Court notes that “when the Government promptly invokes the rule [setting

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Fourth Circuit Affirms Sex Trafficking Convictions

US v. Michael Lawrence Maynes (No. 16-4732) “Michael Maynes was a pimp,” this opinion begins. It quickly goes downhill for the appellant from there. Maynes was convicted of sex trafficking by use of force, fraud, or coercion, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1591(a). The allegations in this case were that Maynes convinced several women to

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Fourth Circuit: W.Va. Unlawful Wounding is a “Crime of Violence” for §4B1.2 Purposes

US v. Donald Covington (No. 17-4120) Covington pleaded guilty to distribution of heroin. His PSR classified him as a career offender based on his two prior felony convictions. At issue in this appeal is his prior conviction for “unlawful wounding” under West Virginia law. The district court found that the latter conviction was not a

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