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United States v. Grant

United States Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit

June 3, 2014

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff - Appellee,
v.
FREDDIE GRANT, Defendant - Appellant

Argued March 26, 2014.

Appeal from the United States District Court for the District of South Carolina, at Columbia. (3:12-cr-00729-CMC-1). Cameron McGowan Currie, Senior District Judge.

ARGUED:

Joshua Snow Kendrick, KENDRICK & LEONARD, P.C., Greenville, South Carolina, for Appellant.

Stacey Denise Haynes, OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES ATTORNEY, Columbia, South Carolina, for Appellee.

ON BRIEF:

Beth Drake, Assistant United States Attorney, OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES ATTORNEY, Columbia, South Carolina, for Appellee.

Before TRAXLER, Chief Judge, FLOYD, Circuit Judge, and HAMILTON, Senior Circuit Judge. Judge Floyd wrote the opinion, in which Chief Judge Traxler and Senior Judge Hamilton joined.

OPINION

Page 481

FLOYD, Circuit Judge:

A jury found Appellant Freddie Grant guilty of being a felon in possession of ammunition. The district court classified Grant as an armed career criminal, in part due to two general court-martial convictions for violent crimes, and calculated his Sentencing Guidelines range accordingly. Grant now appeals, contending that we should vacate his sentence because the district court erred by using the court-martial convictions to classify him as an armed career criminal. For the reasons we outline below, we affirm.

I.

On August 18, 2012, the Richland County Sheriff's Department (RCSD) in Columbia, South Carolina, received a report that a fifteen-year-old girl had disappeared. RCSD identified Grant as a suspect in the disappearance and obtained a search warrant for his home in Elgin, South Carolina. When RCSD and the Elgin Police Department executed the search warrant, investigators seized two boxes of ammunition, which federal law prohibited Grant--a felon--from possessing. See 18 U.S.C. § § 922(g)(1); 924(a)(2), (e). On August 26, 2012, the Federal Bureau of Investigation arrested Grant for being a felon in possession of ammunition, and a grand jury ultimately returned an indictment charging him with the same offense.

A jury convicted Grant on January 15, 2013. A probation officer prepared a Presentence Investigation Report (PSR), which identified Grant as an armed career criminal due to two convictions for violent felonies and one conviction for possession with intent to distribute cocaine. The drug conviction is not at issue in this case. The two violent felony convictions occurred in 1980, while Grant was in Korea serving in the Army. First, a general court-martial[1] convicted Grant of assault by ...


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