United States District Court, W.D. Pennsylvania
MEMORANDUM ORDER REVIEWING DETENTION ORDER AND
DENYING RELEASE FROM CUSTODY
J. Schwab United States District Judge
Alex Brown, Jr., was detained pending trial following a
detention hearing before Chief Magistrate Judge Kelly on
August 29, 2017 on grounds that no condition or combination
of conditions could adequately ensure the safety of the
community. Doc. No. 94. Magistrate Judge Kelly found
that Defendant should be detained due to the strong weight of
evidence against him, the lengthy period of incarceration to
which he will be subject if convicted, his prior criminal
history, and his participating in criminal activity while on
probation, parole, or supervision. Id. Defendant
requests that the Court vacate the detention order and
release him on unsecured bond. Doc. No. 121.
Court has reviewed Defendant's Motion, doc. no.
121, the Government's Response, doc. no.
133, and the Defendant's Reply, doc. no.
140. The Court has also reviewed the Pretrial Services
Report and the transcript of the detention hearing before
Magistrate Judge Kelly, doc. no. 167. For the reasons that
follow, the Court will DENY Defendant's Motion.
18 United States Code Section3145(b), provides that:
If a person is ordered detained by a magistrate judge, or by
a person other than a judge of a court having original
jurisdiction over the offense and other than a Federal
appellate court, the person may file, with the court having
original jurisdiction over the offense, a motion for
revocation or amendment of the order.
United States Court of Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
has determined that the appropriate standard of review is
de novo. United States v. Delker, 757 F.2d
1390, 1394 (3d Cir. 1985). Even though the new Bail Reform
Act, 18 U.S.C. §3141, et seq, does not
specifically grant de novo review to the District
Court, the Court of Appeals found that, “nothing in the
new Act suggests that Congress intended to change that
practice.” Delker, 757 F.2d at 1394. At the
evidentiary level, de novo review does not require
an additional or independent evidentiary hearing by the
District Court, and the Court may incorporate the transcript
of the proceedings before the Magistrate Judge including any
exhibits admitted therein. United States v. Chagra,
850 F.Supp. 354, 357 (W.D. Pa 1994). The Court may also
consider any additional evidence submitted in connection with
the motion. United States v. Turner, 08cr0323, 2008
WL 4186212, at *1 (W.D. Pa. Sept. 5, 2008).
is a presumption of detention in cases in which, as here, the
defendant is charged under the Controlled Substances Act with
an offense for which a maximum term of imprisonment of ten
years or more is prescribed. 18 U.S.C. § 3142(e). To
rebut the presumption, the defendant must produce some
evidence, though “[t]he quantum of evidence required to
rebut the presumption is not high.” United States
v. Gibson, 481 F.Supp.2d 419, 420 (W.D. Pa. 2007). The
defendant must produce some credible evidence that he will
not pose a threat to the community upon his release.
United States v. Wooley, 11cr0158, 2012 WL 3245472
(W.D. Pa. Aug. 7, 2012).
defendant produces evidence to rebut the presumption, the
Government continues to bear the burden of persuasion that
the defendant should be detained. United States v.
Shannon, 11cr0237, 2014 WL 7157335 (W.D. Pa. Dec. 15,
2014). The Government must prove dangerousness by clear and
convincing evidence. Id.
to Section 3142(g), the following four factors must be
(1) the nature and circumstances of the offense;
(2) the weight of the evidence against the person;
(3) the history and characteristics of the person, including
his character, family, employment, finances, length of
residence, ties to community, drug abuse history, criminal
history, record of appearance at court proceedings, and