United States District Court, E.D. Tennessee
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
A. VARLAN UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
the Court are several motions pertaining to
defendant-petitioner Tamral Guzman's criminal case and
associated civil case under 28 U.S.C. § 2255. Two of
these motions relate to defendant's sentence in her
criminal case: she has moved for a reduction in her sentence
under 18 U.S.C. § 3582 and Amendment 782 of the United
States Sentencing Guidelines [Doc. 343], and for
compassionate release under 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(1)(A)
[Doc. 352]. The remaining three motions apparently pertain to
defendant's § 2255 motion, which this Court denied
on March 30, 2018: she has moved for leave to proceed in
forma pauperis on appeal [Doc. 345] and for a certificate of
appealability [Doc. 346], and also for a traceability hearing
and entry of final judgment on the civil docket [Doc. 353].
These motions will be addressed in turn.
Reduction of sentence under 18 U.S.C. § 3582 and
seeks a sentence reduction in light of Amendment 782, which
lowers the base offense level for many drug offenses [Doc.
343]. However, because Amendment 782 does not reduce
defendant's guidelines range, she is ineligible for any
sentence reduction under 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(2). This
motion will therefore be denied.
courts are forbidden, as a general matter, to modify a term
of imprisonment once it has been imposed, but the rule of
finality is subject to a few narrow exceptions.”
Freeman v. United States, 131 S.Ct. 3685, 2690
(2011) (internal citation and quotation marks omitted). One
exception is identified in 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(2):
[I]n the case of a defendant who has been sentenced to a term
of imprisonment based on a sentencing range that has
subsequently been lowered by the Sentencing Commission . . .,
the court may reduce the term of imprisonment, after
considering the factors set forth in section 3553(a) to the
extent that they are applicable, if such a reduction is
consistent with applicable policy statements issued by the
defendant was deemed responsible for a quantity of oxycodone
equivalent to 127, 564 kilograms of marijuana [Doc. 291],
which, under the version of the guidelines in effect at the
time of her sentencing, was well over the 30, 000 kilograms
required for the highest base offense level of 38. Defendant
also received a two-level enhancement for maintaining drug
premises, a two-level enhancement for obstructing justice, a
two-level enhancement for money-laundering, a four-level
leadership-role enhancement, and a three-level reduction for
acceptance of responsibility as to the money-laundering
offense, resulting in a total offense level well in excess of
43, which is treated as if it were 43.
of defendant's high drug quantity, relief under Amendment
782 is unavailable. Even under the lower limits established
by Amendment 782, under which base offense level 38 applies
to quantities in excess of 90, 000 kilograms of marijuana,
defendant's drug quantity-127, 564 kilograms of marijuana
equivalent-still results in a base offense level of 38.
See U.S.S.G. § 2D1.1(c)(1) (2016).
Defendant's total offense level and guidelines range are
thus unchanged. Because Amendment 782 does not lower
defendant's guidelines range, this Court cannot reduce
her sentence. This motion will therefore be denied.
Compassionate Release under 18 U.S.C. §
has moved for compassionate release under 18 U.S.C. §
3582(c)(1)(A) [Doc. 342], which allows the Court to
“modify a term of imprisonment” if
“extraordinary and compelling reasons warrant such a
reduction.” However, the statute permits a defendant to
file such a motion only “after the defendant has fully
exhausted all administrative rights to appeal a failure of
the Bureau of Prisons to bring a motion on the
defendant's behalf or the lapse of 30 days from the
receipt of such a request by the warden of the
defendant's facility, whichever is earlier.”
Defendant's motion does not indicate whether she has
satisfied, or has attempted to satisfy, this exhaustion
requirement. The Court therefore lacks statutory
authorization to modify defendant's sentence under §
3582(c)(1)(A), and so defendant's motion on that basis
will be denied [Doc. 342].
In forma pauperis status and certificate of
respect to her previously denied motion under § 2255,
Defendant has moved for leave to proceed in forma pauperis on
appeal [Doc. 345] and for a certificate of appealability
[Doc. 346]. But the Court has already ruled on this issue.
The memorandum opinion denying defendant's § 2255
motion provided as follows:
The Court will CERTIFY that any appeal from this action would
not be taken in good faith and would be totally frivolous.
Therefore, this Court will DENY petitioner leave to proceed
in forma pauperis on appeal. See Fed. R.
App. Proc. 24. Petitioner having failed to make a substantial
showing of the denial of a constitutional right, a