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Rulings in Criminal Cases Involving Fourth Amendment, Asset Forfeiture, and Sentencing Issues

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By FindLaw Staff on March 01, 2010 9:55 AM

The Fourth District decided three criminal case matters today involving a Fourth Amendment claim, a defendant's claim that a magistrate judge erred in granting government's motion to take defendant's money held in US Marshal's custody for restitution, and a defendant's challenge to his sentence. 

In Gentry v. Sevier, No. 08-3574, the court faced a challenge to the district court's denial of habeas relief on his conviction for burglary related crimes.

In reversing the decision of the Court of Appeals of Indiana, the court held that the when the officers arrived at the scene of the arrest they did not have any basis to form a reasonable suspicion necessary to conduct a Terry stop, and consequently, the appeals court unreasonably applied federal law when it held that the evidence concerning the search of the wheelbarrow was admissible and that defendant's counse's performance did not fall below an objective standard of reasonableness.

In US v. Meux, No. 09-1430, the court faced a challenge to a magistrate judge's order granting government's motion for Turnover of Funds for Restitution $4,881.00 that belonged to the defendant held in US Marshal's custody in an unrealted criminal matter.  In upholding the order, the court held that the defendant was provided the same due process protections he would have been given in garnishment proceedings as he was provided with notice of the motion, was appointed counsel to represent the defendant related to the motion, and was granted a hearing before the magistrate judge.

In US v. Curby, No. 09-2583, the court faced a challenge to a sentence of a defendant convicted of distributing cocaine arguing that the district court failed to adequately evaluate his principle argument in mitigation.  However, under the totality of the circumstances, the district court's discussion showed that it had considered defendant's extensive criminal history and other argument and provided a basis for rejecting it.  Thus, although the district court's discussion was not lengthy, it was enough and defendant's sentence is affirmed.

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