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United States v. Prince

United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit

November 24, 2014

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
BYRON CORNELIUS PRINCE, Defendant-Appellant

Argued and Submitted, Seattle, Washington: August 26, 2014.

Appeal from the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Washington. D.C. No. 2:12-cr-00110-TOR-1. Thomas O. Rice, District Judge, Presiding.

Criminal Law

Affirming a sentence, the panel held that attempted robbery under California Penal Code § 211 is a violent felony under the Armed Career Criminal Act because, in the ordinary case, it poses a serious potential risk of injury to another, and because it creates a serious risk of harm roughly similar, in kind and degree of risk posted, to the enumerated offenses burglary and extortion.

Matthew Campbell, Federal Defenders of Eastern Washington & Idaho, Spokane, Washington, for Defendant-Appellant.

Michael C. Ormsby, United States Attorney; George J.C. Jacobs, III, Assistant United States Attorney, Eastern District of Washington, Spokane, Washington, for Plaintiff-Appellee.

Before: Kim McLane Wardlaw, Ronald M. Gould, and Morgan Christen, Circuit Judges. Opinion by Judge Christen.

OPINION

Page 1174

CHRISTEN, Circuit Judge:

Byron Prince appeals the sentence imposed following his conviction for being a felon in possession of a firearm in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1). Prince challenges

Page 1175

the district court's conclusion that his prior California attempted robbery conviction was a " violent felony" under the Armed Career Criminal Act (ACCA). See 18 U.S.C. § 924(e)(1)-(2)(B). The district court did not err by ruling that attempt to commit robbery under California Penal Code § 211 qualifies as a " violent felony" for purposes of the ACCA because attempted robbery presents a serious potential risk of physical injury to another, and because it is roughly similar, in kind as well as in degree of risk posed, to burglary and extortion, both of which are listed as violent felonies under the ACCA.

FACTS

Prince accidentally shot himself with a revolver on June 21, 2011. The government indicted Prince for being a felon in possession of a firearm, and a jury convicted him. Prince was given a mandatory minimum sentence of fifteen years imprisonment because the district court found he had three prior convictions " for a violent felony . . . committed on occasions different from one another," one of which was attempted ...


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