18 year old, 1st time offender gets 162 years for armed robberies...in FLORIDA

SleepwalkingInJapanSleepwalkingInJapan Posts: 11,866
edited July 2012 in The Social Lounge
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Quartavious Davis is still shocked by what happened to him in federal court two months ago.

"My first offense, and they gave me all this time," said Davis, a pudgy African American with dreadlocks who spoke with Reuters at the Federal Detention Center in Miami. "Might just as well say I'm dead."

Davis was convicted of participating in a string of armed robberies in the Miami area in 2010. His accomplices testified against him, saying he carried a gun during their crimes and discharged it at a dog that chased them after one of their burglaries. But Davis was not convicted of hurting anyone physically, including the dog.

Davis would occupy no place at all in the annals of crime if not for his sentence. Now 20 years old, he was sentenced to 1,941 months - almost 162 years - in prison without the possibility of parole.

On the day of Davis's interview with Reuters, the U.S. Supreme Court decided that life sentences without parole for defendants under the age of 18 constituted "cruel and unusual punishment" even in cases of murder. Unfortunately for Davis, he was 18 at the time of his crimes.

Nonetheless, Davis's attorney will argue that Davis's sentence to die in prison also constitutes "cruel and unusual punishment" on the grounds that Davis is a "first offender," having never before been charged with a crime.

"Just as the Supreme Court recently held that the Constitution bars taking away all discretion from judges in sentencing juveniles to life imprisonment for committing murder," said the attorney, Jacqueline Shapiro, "so also is it cruel and extreme to allow unfettered prosecutorial discretion to force a sentencing judge to impose a life sentence on a teenage first offender convicted of lesser charges."

Davis's unusually long sentence results from a controversial practice known as "stacking," in which each count of an indictment is counted as a separate crime, thus transforming a first-time defendant into a "habitual criminal" subject to multiple sentences and mandatory sentencing guidelines.


"Any law that provides for a mandatory term of imprisonment for a 19-year-old first offender that exceeds a century has got to be unconstitutional," said Michael Zelman, the court-appointed attorney who represented Davis at his trial.

Zelman resigned from Davis's case after filing a notice of appeal. If Davis's new lawyer, Shapiro, has her way, the Supreme Court may ultimately decide the issue. The case will be appealed first to the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta.

Until then, Davis's story will be a prominent case in point for both sides in an increasingly heated debate, pitting those who would protect society from the prospective dangers posed by serial criminals against those who see the United States - whose overcrowded prisons house fully one-quarter of all the prisoners in the world, most of them black - as a bastion of injustice.

ODD MAN OUT

When he was arrested on December 23, 2010, Davis was an unemployed high school dropout living with an aunt in Goulds, Florida, a poor, predominantly black neighborhood south of Miami.

According to expert testimony at his trial, Davis suffers from a learning disability and bipolar disorder.

At the time of his arrest, he told Reuters, he was living on $674 a month in Social Security disability payments and hoping to get back into school to learn a trade.

On February 9 of this year he was convicted of committing seven armed robberies at fast-food restaurants, a Walgreens pharmacy and other commercial establishments in the Miami area from August to October of 2010.

Davis, who still maintains his innocence, was the only one of the six men charged who went to trial. The others cut plea deals that left them with sentences of nine to 22 years in prison.

As the odd man out, Davis was convicted largely on the basis of his accomplices' testimony, court documents show.

Davis, who was not identified as the group's ringleader, claims he was never offered a plea bargain.

Davis's ex-attorney, Zelman, declined to comment on this point, citing attorney-client privilege.

Prosecutors declined to comment on any aspect of this story.

During the prison interview, Davis was advised by Shapiro not to discuss many specifics about his case.

According to the trial transcript, one of Davis's accomplices testified that he fired his weapon on two occasions - at the dog who chased him and 11 days later outside a Wendy's restaurant they had just robbed. He said Davis traded gunshots with a customer at the restaurant as he and three others sped away in their getaway car.

The accounts of Davis's firing his gun were otherwise uncorroborated.

The armed customer outside Wendy's, Dade County Public Schools maintenance worker Antonio Lamont Brooks, was unable to offer positive identification of the man with whom he exchanged gunfire. But he was uninjured and managed to squeeze off enough rounds from his 9mm handgun to leave one of Davis's accomplices with a bullet wound in his left buttock.

TOUGH PROSECUTORS

It is not clear why prosecutors decided to throw the full weight of the law at Davis.

Florida, though, has a history of "very zealous" prosecutions, according to Marc Mauer, executive director of the Washington-based Sentencing Project, which advocates for reform in the criminal-justice system.

For example, Florida leads in the number of juveniles sentenced to life without parole for lesser crimes than murder, sentences the Supreme Court declared to be unconstitutional in 2010. Florida and other states are now trying to determine how to resentence or grant parole to inmates affected by that ruling.

According to a recent study by the Pew Center on the States, Florida was first, among the 35 states reporting, in increases in time served in its prisons from 1990 to 2009.

In one recent, highly controversial Florida sentencing, Marissa Alexander, an African-American woman in Jacksonville with no previous criminal record, was sentenced to 20 years for firing a pistol twice into the air while trying to ward off an attack by her abusive husband. Denied the protection of Florida's controversial "stand your ground" law, the 31-year-old mother of three was convicted of aggravated assault, a felony, and given the mandatory sentence for anyone who fires a gun in commission of the felony.

Davis's sentencing has not generated the same degree of public interest.
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Replies


  • "THE INSTALLMENT PLAN"

    Davis was convicted of seven counts of possessing a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence, an offense punishable under the so-called mandatory minimum sentences imposed by Congress since the late 1980s.

    Mauer said such sentences have been associated with an 800 percent increase in the federal prison population since 1980.

    Davis received seven years for the first of the firearm counts against him and 25 years apiece for each of the six subsequent counts. The law, as written by Congress, requires the sentences to be served consecutively. In prison slang, such sentences are sometimes referred to as "life on the installment plan" or "running wild."

    In a report to Congress last October, the U.S. Sentencing Commission, which sets guidelines for federal courts, noted that many law enforcement officials, including New York Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly, viewed mandatory minimum penalties as an important "investigative tool" because they provide leverage over suspects and help persuade them to cooperate with the authorities in exchange for lesser charges.

    "In addition to their deterrent effect, some policymakers assert that mandatory minimum penalties reduce crime by incapacitating criminals and protecting the public from their potential future offenses," the commission said.

    At the same time, it criticized certain aspects of the mandatory minimum laws, observing that the practice of stacking, in particular, can result in "excessively severe and unjust sentences."

    Since 2003 the Justice Department has had guidelines in place that discourage prosecutors from stacking in cases where it can lead to excessive sentences.

    Yet prosecutors have broad discretion within their jurisdictions to follow their own lights, according to criminal-law experts.

    In a statement issued the day after the sentencing, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida Wifredo Ferrer hailed Davis's lock-up for life as sending an unmistakable warning to anyone seeking to profit from violent crime.

    "We will not allow our community to be overrun by guns and violence," he said.

    Although he has no alternative explanation, Davis cannot accept that that is the real reason he will have to die in prison.

    "There ain't no justice in the justice system," he said, gazing down at his olive-green prison jumpsuit and beige rubber sandals.

    "I ain't going to never accept what happened," he added. "They know what they did isn't right."
  • illedoutilledout Posts: 3,786
    Pussy ass crackers give a nigga a hundred years
    Have ya mama leavin' out the courtroom in tears
    Crackers don't love to have a nigga breathin' for real
    Take a nigga life from him they don't know how it feel..

    Plies said it best..
  • jonojono Posts: 12,842
    This is the kind of case a lot of groups are scared as hell to touch and here's why:

    Very few people like arguing on behalf of criminals, even less like arguing on behalf of VIOLENT criminals. Regardless of how egregious the sentence most people will state that he did the crime and he deserves the time (naturally assuming a fair trial). Then of course the "what ifs" and the "next times" come out to make it just a hopeless cause.

    At most they can work to get his sentence reduced or to change the law so no one else can get this kind of sentence but its doubtful that will change, especially in the state of Florida.
  • Fucked up shit. Glad i don't live in Florida, seems fucked up over there.
  • blakfyahkingblakfyahking Posts: 13,914
    somehow I don't feel bad for cuzzo

    it's fucked up...............but come on bruh

    multiple robberies tho? SMH
  • playmaker88playmaker88 Posts: 40,776
    I dont feel too bad for him... if he was some white kid hed be out in 18 months.. with that said ..

    he chose the wrong life
  • infamous114infamous114 Posts: 21,568
    Goddamn...162 years...Goulds is a grimey part of southern Dade County.
  • janklowjanklow Posts: 5,023
    there's also the fact that given that all his co-defendants took pleas, they want to show him he should have done the same
    illedout wrote: »
    Plies said it best..
    truly a statement that should never be said
  • Yea. That's fucked up. Most states have a first offenders program where you will get boot camp or get a less charge, like dropped from 1st degree to 2nd degree.

    The real problem is his homies snitchin. That has to stop.
  • illedoutilledout Posts: 3,786
    Pussy ass crackers give a nigga a hundred years
    Have ya mama leavin' out the courtroom in tears
    Crackers don't love to have a nigga breathin' for real
    Take a nigga life from him they don't know how it feel..

    Plies said it best..
    somehow I don't feel bad for cuzzo

    it's fucked up...............but come on bruh

    multiple robberies tho? SMH

    dude its killers that aint get that much time...
    this lil boy aint done no violent shit to nobody..
    he aint a threat to the community..
    162yrs is fuckin outragious
    for a 1st offender with a non-violent crime..

    people never give a fuck until it happens to them or someone they love..
  • SleepwalkingInJapanSleepwalkingInJapan Posts: 11,866
    edited July 2012
    guilty zimmerman > guilty bruh

    guilty casey > guilty bruh

    guilty sandusky > guilty bruh
  • TrashboatTrashboat Posts: 11,471
    That's crazy. The judge basically said "The fuck with rehabilitation and release back into society, let him rot in jail at the tax payers expense".


    That's the kinda shit that happens when prisons become privately owned and a lucrative business opportunity
  • blakfyahkingblakfyahking Posts: 13,914
    illedout wrote: »
    Pussy ass crackers give a nigga a hundred years
    Have ya mama leavin' out the courtroom in tears
    Crackers don't love to have a nigga breathin' for real
    Take a nigga life from him they don't know how it feel..

    Plies said it best..
    somehow I don't feel bad for cuzzo

    it's fucked up...............but come on bruh

    multiple robberies tho? SMH

    dude its killers that aint get that much time...
    this lil boy aint done no violent shit to nobody..
    he aint a threat to the community..

    162yrs is fuckin outragious
    for a 1st offender with a non-violent crime..

    people never give a fuck until it happens to them or someone they love..

    LMAO @ the irony of the bolded and the underlined

    how would you feel bruh if the lil nigga ran in your spot, or ya mom's house?


    the reason the justice system is flawed is cause mofos easily play into its hands

    you should have enough sense to know that shit is biased against you..................so why multiple robberies?

    tough break for the lil dude :shrugs
  • nujerz84nujerz84 Posts: 10,996
    dont feel bad for dude he did a crime yeah its fucked up but he fucked up first
  • illedoutilledout Posts: 3,786
    janklow wrote: »
    there's also the fact that given that all his co-defendants took pleas, they want to show him he should have done the same
    illedout wrote: »
    Plies said it best..
    truly a statement that should never be said

    agreed..
    but its true..
  • illedoutilledout Posts: 3,786
    illedout wrote: »
    Pussy ass crackers give a nigga a hundred years
    Have ya mama leavin' out the courtroom in tears
    Crackers don't love to have a nigga breathin' for real
    Take a nigga life from him they don't know how it feel..

    Plies said it best..
    somehow I don't feel bad for cuzzo

    it's fucked up...............but come on bruh

    multiple robberies tho? SMH

    dude its killers that aint get that much time...
    this lil boy aint done no violent shit to nobody..
    he aint a threat to the community..

    162yrs is fuckin outragious
    for a 1st offender with a non-violent crime..

    people never give a fuck until it happens to them or someone they love..

    LMAO @ the irony of the bolded and the underlined

    how would you feel bruh if the lil nigga ran in your spot, or ya mom's house?


    the reason the justice system is flawed is cause mofos easily play into its hands

    you should have enough sense to know that shit is biased against you..................so why multiple robberies?

    tough break for the lil dude :shrugs

    162yrs is unnecessary..
    hes only 18yrs old..
    he can be taught a lesson..

    if he broke into my house or my mothers house,
    he may not make it out alive..
    but if he does make it out
    then later happen to get caught by the police,
    I wouldnt want the judge to give him
    a punishment that doesnt fit the crime..
  • illedoutilledout Posts: 3,786
    162yrs..
    the men who slayed Malcolm X
    didnt get half the amount of time this lil boy got..

    shit George Zimmerman will get less time than this lil boy..
    and they in th same state..smh
  • playmaker88playmaker88 Posts: 40,776
    illedout wrote: »
    Pussy ass crackers give a nigga a hundred years
    Have ya mama leavin' out the courtroom in tears
    Crackers don't love to have a nigga breathin' for real
    Take a nigga life from him they don't know how it feel..

    Plies said it best..
    somehow I don't feel bad for cuzzo

    it's fucked up...............but come on bruh

    multiple robberies tho? SMH

    dude its killers that aint get that much time...
    this lil boy aint done no violent shit to nobody..
    he aint a threat to the community..

    162yrs is fuckin outragious
    for a 1st offender with a non-violent crime..

    people never give a fuck until it happens to them or someone they love..

    LMAO @ the irony of the bolded and the underlined

    how would you feel bruh if the lil nigga ran in your spot, or ya mom's house?


    the reason the justice system is flawed is cause mofos easily play into its hands

    you should have enough sense to know that shit is biased against you..................so why multiple robberies?

    tough break for the lil dude :shrugs

    Tell him homey.. real talk if someone in my fam go that time for runnin up in someones spot no fucks would be given.. but then again.. i have a large family and our to jail record is pretty immaculate...

    winning.
  • blakfyahkingblakfyahking Posts: 13,914
    illedout wrote: »
    illedout wrote: »
    Pussy ass crackers give a nigga a hundred years
    Have ya mama leavin' out the courtroom in tears
    Crackers don't love to have a nigga breathin' for real
    Take a nigga life from him they don't know how it feel..

    Plies said it best..
    somehow I don't feel bad for cuzzo

    it's fucked up...............but come on bruh

    multiple robberies tho? SMH

    dude its killers that aint get that much time...
    this lil boy aint done no violent shit to nobody..
    he aint a threat to the community..

    162yrs is fuckin outragious
    for a 1st offender with a non-violent crime..

    people never give a fuck until it happens to them or someone they love..

    LMAO @ the irony of the bolded and the underlined

    how would you feel bruh if the lil nigga ran in your spot, or ya mom's house?


    the reason the justice system is flawed is cause mofos easily play into its hands

    you should have enough sense to know that shit is biased against you..................so why multiple robberies?

    tough break for the lil dude :shrugs

    162yrs is unnecessary..
    hes only 18yrs old..
    he can be taught a lesson..


    if he broke into my house or my mothers house,
    he may not make it out alive..

    but if he does make it out
    then later happen to get caught by the police,
    I wouldnt want the judge to give him
    a punishment that doesnt fit the crime..

    the bolded is ass backwards logic

    you saying if he broke into your shit, it's ok for the lil nigga to get the death penalty thru street justice

    but then you turn around and become upset cause a formal court system basically gave him the same punishment


    bruh you might be part of the problem why the system is so fucked up


  • MrSoutCityMrSoutCity Posts: 2,244
    So are we suppose to feel bad for this dude?????
  • illedoutilledout Posts: 3,786
    illedout wrote: »
    illedout wrote: »
    Pussy ass crackers give a nigga a hundred years
    Have ya mama leavin' out the courtroom in tears
    Crackers don't love to have a nigga breathin' for real
    Take a nigga life from him they don't know how it feel..

    Plies said it best..
    somehow I don't feel bad for cuzzo

    it's fucked up...............but come on bruh

    multiple robberies tho? SMH

    dude its killers that aint get that much time...
    this lil boy aint done no violent shit to nobody..
    he aint a threat to the community..

    162yrs is fuckin outragious
    for a 1st offender with a non-violent crime..

    people never give a fuck until it happens to them or someone they love..

    LMAO @ the irony of the bolded and the underlined

    how would you feel bruh if the lil nigga ran in your spot, or ya mom's house?


    the reason the justice system is flawed is cause mofos easily play into its hands

    you should have enough sense to know that shit is biased against you..................so why multiple robberies?

    tough break for the lil dude :shrugs

    162yrs is unnecessary..
    hes only 18yrs old..
    he can be taught a lesson..


    if he broke into my house or my mothers house,
    he may not make it out alive..

    but if he does make it out
    then later happen to get caught by the police,
    I wouldnt want the judge to give him
    a punishment that doesnt fit the crime..

    the bolded is ass backwards logic

    you saying if he broke into your shit, it's ok for the lil nigga to get the death penalty thru street justice

    but then you turn around and become upset cause a formal court system basically gave him the same punishment


    bruh you might be part of the problem why the system is so fucked up


    people like ya scary ass is the problem..

    U so intimidated and afraid of people like this young boy that U want him thrown in jail forever and a day..

    U like fuck it I rather he be in jail cause U scared to deal with people like him..

    Thats some pussy shit to wish jail on somebody..
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