United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
Herndon, United States District Judge
matter is currently on remand from the United States Court of
Appeals for the Seventh Circuit for a limited remand pursuant
to United States v. Paladino, 401 F.3d 471 (7th Cir.
2005). United States v. Cureton, 882 F.3d 714 (7th
Cir. 2018). The Seventh Circuit asked this Court to
“determine whether it would have imposed the same
sentence on Cureton, knowing that in light of Dean,
it may consider a mandatory sentence under § 924(c) when
deciding sentences for other crimes, or whether the court
wishes to have a new opportunity to exercise its discretion
and judgment in a complete resentencing.” Paladino
instructs that, on limited remand, the sentencing judge must
determine whether he would reimpose his original sentence.
“If the picture was cloudier, we have used a
Paladino remand to ensure that if the
Roberson rule affected the sentence, the district
judge would have had an opportunity to exercise its
discretion.” Cureton, 882 F.3d 714 (citing
United States v. Anderson, 881 F.3d 568 (7th Cir.
soliciting and reviewing the parties' briefs and the
record in this matter, the Court determines that it would
reimpose the same sentence even in light of Dean.
First, Cureton's conviction for interstate communication
of a ransom request in violation of Section 875(a) is the
predicate conviction underlying his Section 924(c)
conviction. In addition and more importantly, this Court
earlier determined that Cureton's capacity for violence
and depravity was extreme and Cureton needed to be off the
streets for as long as the law would permit which the Court
determined to be 444 months imprisonment. As the Court stated
about Cureton during both the July 16, 2014 and November 13,
“It's quite something different to be someone who
beats the life out of somebody because they made the
horrendous mistake of dropping some money on their way to
meet up with - because they are to do something forbidden.
That's what makes people like Mr. Cureton very dangerous
to the community.” (July 16, 2014 Sentencing Trans. p.
37, lines 5-10.) “
[T]his case is more about the violent case that occurred over
the lost money and the violence surrounding the victim who
was held against her will who went through all of the torture
associated with having a knife held against certain body
parts, a gun held against her head, a ransom request made.
All of that is very, very serious. And so you take that kind
of violence, which I don't think anybody in the community
that's looking to reduce sentences having to do with
drugs would in any way suggest that his sentence needs to be
reduced because we have somebody who's involved in the
drug business and we've got a change in attitudes about
drugs. That's just not consistent with the arguments that
they make about why we need to change our thinking about drug
crime. … they would say that case points out one of
the types of cases that you wouldn't want to reduce the
sentence. That kind of violence, that tangentially would not
be the kind of case where you would want to reduce a
November 13, 2015 Sentencing Trans. ps. 23-24, lines 16-10.
Likewise, then District Judge Murphy similarly found
“The victim in this case is set on a bucket with her
wrists and ankles tied by the defendant. She was beaten while
she was seated, punched in the head and face, kneed in the
ribs, kicked in the hip and, in addition, she was choked.
This was done several times, He punched her off the bucket,
kicked her in the side, leg and head. Took off - defendant
took off his belt and put it around her neck. … I
think Mr. Cureton is a dangerous man, I think that he is
dangerous not just for the reason - and we heard what the
evidence was and what he did to this young woman - but he was
wrong. You were - you were after the wrong person, and that
makes you doubly dangerous. You were - you were willing to
take this young woman to an inch of her life on the theory
she had stolen your dope. And the Court heard all the
evidence, and I don't think she stole your dope. …
But to tie a young woman up and kick, beat her, and threaten
to cut her, and to bring other people in to frighten her, and
then to call her family, just a horrible, horrible, horrible
experience for everyone involved, is - is cold and vicious
January 30, 2012 Sentencing Trans. p. 29, lines 13-19, ps.
36-37, lines 22-11. The Court still believes that Cureton is
a very dangerous man who is another drug deal gone bad, a
road rage incident or whatever sets off this defendant's
anger. The next time there will be a murder case instead of
what happened here, kidnapping and torture. A sentence at or
near the mandatory sentence in this case or any sentence
other than that previously imposed by this Court would be so
insignificant as to be a travesty of justice. Thus, the
Court, after considering the factors set forth in 18 U.S.C.
§ 3553(a), determines that a 444-month sentence is
sufficient but not greater than necessary to effect the
purposes of the Sentencing Reform Act of 1984.
Court DIRECTS the Clerk of the Court to
furnish a copy of this Memorandum and Order to the
appropriate person at the United States Court of Appeals for
the Seventh Circuit, which has retained jurisdiction over
this matter, so that the Court of Appeals is aware that this
District Court has fulfilled the requirements of the February
16, 2018 Opinion of limited remand.
IS SO ORDERED.
 The parties are aware of the extensive
background of this case. Thus, the Court need not recite the
procedural background or facts as that is not
 In Dean, the Supreme Court
held that, “when calculating an appropriate sentence
for the predicate” offense, a sentencing court properly
considers the fact of the “mandatory minimum under
§ 924(c).” Dean ...