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United States v. Jones

February 27, 2008

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
v.
THOMAS D. JONES



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Sylvia H. Rambo United States District Judge

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

I. Background

On June 12, 2006, Defendant Thomas D. Jones was sentenced to a term of 21 months in case number 1:CR-05-385-02. Defendant was due to be released from that sentence on February 16, 2008. On November 8, 2006, Defendant was indicted on felony drug trafficking charges which was assigned the case number captioned above. Defendant appeared before the United States magistrate judge for arraignment on the charges in this case on February 22, 2007 and was therefore still serving the sentence imposed in case number 1:CR-05-385-02. Since Defendant was incarcerated on the latter charge, the Government did not seek an order of detention in the captioned case and Defendant was not required to post bail. The Government was permitted to revisit the issue of pretrial detention if circumstances changed.

On January 31, 2008, the Government filed a motion for reconsideration of an order setting bail, in light of the fact that Defendant was to be released from incarceration on or about February 16, 2008 for the sentence imposed in 1:CR-05-385-02. On February 21, 2008, a hearing was held on the motion.

II. Discussion

Under 18 U.S.C. § 3142(g), the court must consider certain factors in determining whether there are conditions of release that will reasonably assure the appearance of the person as required and the safety of any other person and the community. Those factors are set forth and addressed as follows.

A. The Nature and Circumstances of the Offense

Defendant is charged with offenses under 21 U.S.C. § 841(a)(1), § 846, 18 U.S.C. § 2, as well as a criminal forfeiture count under 21 U.S.C. § 853. These offenses are punishable by imprisonment of ten years or more. Thus, there is a rebuttable presumption under 18 U.S.C. § 3142(e) that there is no condition or combination of conditions that would guarantee Defendant's appearance in court or the safety of other persons and the community.

B. The Weight of the Evidence Against the Defendant

The Government has proffered that it has interviewed more than 20 witnesses who have identified Defendant as the source of their crack cocaine. In fact, several indicted individuals from whom 12-ounces of crack cocaine was seized identified Defendant as their source. Another individual identified Defendant as the source of 315 grams of crack cocaine and another identified Defendant as the source of 5 ounces of crack cocaine.

On one occasion, agents searched an apartment on North Progress Avenue where 500 grams of cocaine and drug paraphernalia was seized. The occupants identified Defendant as the person who cooked the cocaine into crack.

Defendant objects to the information above as hearsay and from a corrupt source. At a bail hearing, however, such hearsay evidence is permitted.

Fed. R. Evid. 1101(d)(3). In any event, it is not conceivable that more than 20 ...


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