Decided: November 19, 2012
In this case, the Fourth Circuit affirmed its early opinion in United States v. Edmonds, 679 F.3d 169 (4th Cir. 2012), in which it had concluded that the defendant was properly convicted for his role in a conspiracy to possess and distribute crack cocaine. However, the court vacated the life sentence imposed on the defendant and remanded the case for resentencing in light of the Fair Sentencing Act of 2010. The court held that in determining the defendant’s sentence, the district court needed to apply this federal statute which had become effective on August 3, 2010—the exact date on which the defendant had received his original sentence. According to the court, even though the defendant had committed his offenses before the effectiveness date, he was entitled to the statute’s provisions at his sentencing hearing pursuant to the Supreme Court’s recent opinion in Dorsey v. United States, 132 S. Ct. 2321 (2012).
-John C. Bruton, III