United States v. Jerry Paul C.

929 F. Supp. 1406 (1996)

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United States v. Jerry Paul C.

United States District Court for the District of New Mexico
929 F. Supp. 1406 (1996)

Facts

A 15-year-old mother gave birth to Jerry Paul C. (defendant), a member of the Acomo Pueblo. Raised without rules or discipline, Jerry had behavioral problems including failing grades, truancy, aggression, and defiance towards authorities, and he became a gang member. One night on the reservation, 15-year-old Jerry and two friends held a man at gunpoint and abducted him, then robbed a store and terrorized the employees. Jerry and his friends then came upon a man who was sleeping in a truck, and Jerry shot the man to death. Jerry was tried and convicted as an adult under the New Mexico state criminal-justice system and sentenced to confinement for 120 months, with the possibility of reduction to 60 months served for good behavior. The federal government (plaintiff) filed a motion under the federal mandatory transfer statute, 18 U.S.C. § 5032, seeking Jerry’s transfer to the federal criminal-justice system. In the federal system, Jerry would face between 147 and 168 consecutive months of imprisonment; good behavior would reduce his time served by a maximum of 15 percent. At the hearing, experts testified that Jerry was antisocial, at serious risk of reoffending, and unlikely to be rehabilitated. Other experts testified that Jerry could be rehabilitated with substance-abuse treatment and that his incarceration had made him realize the gravity of his crimes. There was little evidence concerning the availability of behavioral-rehabilitation treatment.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Black, J.)

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