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United States v. Galles

United States District Court, Ninth Circuit

October 8, 2013

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff/Respondent,
LESLIE MARK GALLES, Defendant/Movant.


DONALD W. MOLLOY, District Judge.

On May 2, 2013, Defendant/Movant Leslie Galles ("Galles"), a federal prisoner proceeding pro se, filed a motion to vacate, set aside, or correct his sentence, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2255.

On August 21, 2013, the United States was ordered to show cause why Galles' § 2255 motion should not be granted. Both parties and the probation officer wrongly advised Judge Cebull at sentencing that Galles' state and federal sentences would run concurrently. On August 23, 2013, the United States conceded that the motion must be granted as to that claim. This Order addresses all of Galles' claims.

I. Background

On February 7, 2011, Galles was backing his vehicle down an interstate on-ramp when a patrol officer stopped him on suspicion of driving under the influence. The officer asked Galles to step out of the vehicle to do a field sobriety test. While patting Galles down for weapons, the officer felt what he believed to be ammunition in Galles' pockets. The officer asked Galles if he had any weapons. Galles responded he had a.22-caliber pistol under his driver's seat. The officer retrieved the revolver, which was loaded with five rounds of ammunition. The officer also found three different kinds of ammunition, totaling 304 rounds, in Galles' pockets. A breath test indicated Galles' blood-alcohol content was 0.237. Presentence Report ¶¶ 6-9; see also Offer of Proof (doc. 19) at 3-5.

Because Galles had been convicted in 2008 of felony second-degree burglary of a residence in South Dakota, see Presentence Report ¶ 31; S.D. Codified Laws § 22-32-3 (eff. July 1, 2006), he was charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition, violations of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1). Indictment (doc. 1). On February 9, 2012, he entered open pleas of guilty to both charges. Minutes (doc. 20).

A presentence report was prepared. Under the guidelines, burglary of a dwelling is a crime of violence. U.S.S.G. § 4B1.2(1)(2). The presentence report recited that, in connection with the South Dakota conviction, Gilles stole prescription medication and other items from a private residence. Presentence Report ¶ 31. The base offense level was 20. Id. § 2K2.1(a)(4)(A). Gilles received a three-point downward adjustment for acceptance of responsibility, id. § 3E1.1, for a total adjusted offense level of 17. Based on a criminal history category of IV, his advisory guideline range was 37-46 months. U.S.S.G. ch. 5 Part A (Sentencing Table). He was sentenced to serve 38 months on each count, concurrent, followed by a three-year term of supervised release, also concurrent on both counts. Minutes (doc. 22); Judgment (doc. 24) at 2-3. Judgment was entered on May 11, 2012.

Galles did not appeal. His conviction became final on May 25, 2012. Fed. R. App. P. 4(b); Gonzalez v. Thaler, ___ U.S. ___, 132 S.Ct. 641, 653-54 (2012). He timely filed his § 2255 motion on May 2, 2013. 28 U.S.C. § 2255(f)(1).

II. Claims and Analysis

Galles makes several claims of ineffective assistance of counsel. Strickland v. Washington, 466 U.S. 668 (1984), governs such claims. First, Galles must show that counsel's performance fell below an objective standard of reasonableness. Id. at 687-88. Second, he must show "a reasonable probability that, but for counsel's unprofessional errors, the result of the proceeding would have been different." Id. at 694. "A reasonable probability is a probability sufficient to undermine confidence in the outcome." Id. "[T]here is no reason for a court deciding an ineffective assistance claim... even to address both components of the inquiry if the defendant makes an insufficient showing on one." Id. at 697.

A. Credit for Time Served

Galles contends that counsel advised him he would receive credit for time spent in custody from October 2011 to May 2012; yet he not only did not receive that credit, he did not begin earning credit against his federal sentence until July 2012. Mot. § 2255 (doc. 28) at 6.

Both parties as well as the probation officer led Judge Cebull to believe at sentencing that Galles' federal and state sentences would run concurrently. See Sentencing Tr. (doc. 34) at 13:19-14:8. That was not correct. 18 U.S.C. § 3584(a) (last sentence). Because Judge Cebull raised the issue, it is likely he would have ordered the state and federal sentences to run concurrently had he been correctly advised that they would run consecutively unless he ordered otherwise. Although the error was shared equally by defense counsel, the prosecutor, and the probation officer, Galles' claim of ineffective assistance has merit. He is entitled to be resentenced in a manner that gives him the credit Judge Cebull would have given him had he been correctly advised about 18 U.S.C. § 3584(a). The United States agrees. Resp. to Order to Show Cause (doc. 35) at 2.

Galles' § 2255 motion will be granted as to this claim. An Amended Criminal Judgment will be ...

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