United States v. Joseph, No. 19-11198 (11th Cir. 2020)Annotate this Case
The Eleventh Circuit affirmed defendant's four drug convictions and sentences for conspiring to possess with intent to distribute heroin and possessing with intent to distribute heroin and fentanyl. The court held that the district court properly denied defendant's motion to suppress where defendant has shown no clear error in the district court's finding that the detective did not make any false statements and was able to see what he reasonably believed was contraband or evidence of a crime.
The court also held that the district court did not err by denying defendant's motions for a mistrial where there was no error in the prosecutor's opening remarks and the district court did not abuse its discretion by admitting the fentanyl evidence. Furthermore, the district court did not abuse its discretion by denying the motion for mistrial based on defendant's brother's outburst. The court also held that the district court did not abuse its discretion by admitting DNA testimony, as well as defendant's rental application and lease. The court denied defendant's claims of cumulative error. Finally, the court held that defendant's sentence was substantively reasonable.