The law is constantly changing, and modifications to the definitions of crimes and sentencing requirements can impact the manner in which criminal cases are resolved. Even if an intervening change of law occurs, though, it may not be considered grounds for modifying a sentence once it has been imposed. This was demonstrated recently in an opinion issued by a Florida court in which it denied a defendant’s request for compassionate release that was triggered by a change in the definition of a crime of violence. If you are accused of a violent crime, it is in your best interest to meet with a St. Petersburg violent crime defense attorney to discuss your rights.
The Defendant’s Sentence and Appeal
It is alleged that in 2015 the defendant entered a guilty plea to Hobbs Act robbery via a written plea agreement that included a waiver of the right to appeal his sentence. During his sentencing hearing, he was deemed a career offender on the grounds that he had two prior violent crime convictions and Hobbs Act robbery qualified as a crime of violence. He did not object to the designation and was sentenced to 151 months in prison.
Reportedly, although the defendant did not appeal his sentence, his two codefendants did on the grounds that Hobbs Act robbery was not a crime of violence. Their challenges were successful. In 2020, the defendant filed a motion seeking a sentence reduction based on compelling and extraordinary reasons, namely that Hobbs Act robberies were no longer deemed crimes of violence. The court denied the motion, and the defendant appealed. Continue Reading ›