United States v. Wallace, No. 11-1969 (3d Cir. 2011)Annotate this Case
Defendant pleaded guilty to criminal conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute marijuana (21 U.S.C. § 846). The district court sentenced him to 70 months of imprisonment, classifying a crime he committed at the age of 16 as a prior felony conviction under the sentencing guidelines (4B1.2). Under New York law, an individual between the ages of 16 and 19 may be deemed an "eligible youth" if he is charged with a criminal offense and fulfills other specified conditions. N.Y. CRIM. PROC. LAW 720.10(1)-(2). If classified as an eligible youth, the court will vacate and replace the conviction with a youthful offender finding. The Third Circuit affirmed, reasoning that the conviction was an adult conviction, regardless of a subsequent "youthful offender" adjudication.