United States v. Webb, No. 19-6491 (4th Cir. 2021)Annotate this Case
The Fourth Circuit affirmed the district court's judgment reducing defendant's sentence by two years, rather than the five years that defendant requested. Defendant sought a reduction in sentence under the First Step Act, and the district court rejected defendant's proportionate argument in favor of individualized consideration. The district court acknowledged that defendant had come a long way since the imposition of his original sentence but that he must take responsibility for his actions in a way that he failed to do during his initial sentencing hearing.
The court held that district courts should be afforded significant discretion in addressing requests for sentence reductions under the First Step Act. In this case, the district court fully explained its decision to reduce defendant's sentence by two years, considering defendant's arguments and the nature of his offense, his characteristics, including both his post-sentencing mitigation evidence and his criminal record, his new guidelines sentencing range, and the new statutory mandatory minimum in fashioning defendant's sentence. Therefore, the district court did not abuse its discretion in sentencing defendant.