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United States v. Peyton

United States District Court, E.D. Texas, Beaumont Division

November 21, 2017

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
v.
MICHAEL DAVID PEYTON

          FINDINGS OF FACT AND RECOMMENDATION ON GUILTY PLEA BEFORE THE UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

          Zack Hawthorn United States Magistrate Judge.

         By order of the District Court, this matter is referred to the undersigned United States Magistrate Judge for administration of the guilty plea under Rule 11. Magistrate judges have the statutory authority to conduct a felony guilty plea proceeding as an “additional duty” pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(3). United States v. Bolivar-Munoz, 313 F.3d 253, 255 (5th Cir. 2002).

         On November 21, 2017, this case came before the undersigned magistrate judge for entry of a guilty plea by the Defendant, Michael David Peyon, to Count One of the Indictment. Count One alleges that from on or about April 1, 2017, the exact date being unknown to the Grand Jury, and continuing thereafter until on or about April 17, 2017, in the Eastern District of Texas and elsewhere, Michael David Peyton and his co-defendants, did intentionally and knowingly conspire, combine, confederate and agree together, with each other, and with other persons known and unknown to the Grand Jury, to possess with intent to distribute a controlled substance, to wit: Schedule II controlled substance, namely 500 grams or more of a mixture or substance containing a detectable amount of methamphetamine, in violation of 21 U.S.C. § 841(a)(1), all in violation of 21 U.S.C. § 846 (Conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine).

         Peyton entered a plea of guilty to Count One of the Indictment into the record at the hearing. After conducting the proceeding in the form and manner prescribed by Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 11, the undersigned finds:

a. That the Defendant, after consultation with his attorney, has knowingly, freely and voluntarily consented to the administration of the guilty plea in this case by a United States Magistrate Judge in the Eastern District of Texas, subject to a final approval and imposition of sentence by the District Court.
b. That the Defendant is fully competent and capable of entering an informed plea, that the Defendant is aware of the nature of the charges and the consequences of the plea, and that the plea of guilty is made freely, knowingly, and voluntarily. Upon addressing the Defendant personally in open court, the undersigned determined that the Defendant's plea is knowing and voluntary and did not result from force, threats or promises. See Fed. R. Crim. P. 11(b)(2).
c. That the Defendant's knowing and voluntary plea is supported by an independent factual basis establishing each of the essential elements of the offense and the Defendant realizes that his conduct falls within the definition of the crime charged under 21 U.S.C. § 846 (Conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine).

         STATEMENT OF REASONS

         As factual support for the Defendant's guilty plea, the Government recited a factual basis. See Factual Basis and Stipulation. In support, the Government would prove that the Defendant is the same person charged in the Indictment and that the events described in the Indictment occurred in the Eastern District of Texas and elsewhere. The Government would also have proven, beyond a reasonable doubt, each and every essential element of the offense as alleged in Count One of the Indictment through the testimony of witnesses, including expert witnesses, and admissible exhibits.

         Counsel for the Defendant and the Government attested to the Defendant's competency and capability to enter an informed plea of guilty. The Defendant personally testified that he was entering his guilty plea knowingly, freely and voluntarily.

         RECOMMENDED DISPOSITION

         IT IS THEREFORE the recommendation of the undersigned United States Magistrate Judge that the District Court accept the Guilty Plea of the Defendant, which the undersigned determines to be supported by an independent factual basis establishing each of the essential elements of the offense charged in Count One of the Indictment. Accordingly, it is further recommended that the District Court finally adjudge the Defendant, Michael David Peyton, guilty of the charged offense under 21 U.S.C. § 846 (Conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine)

         The Defendant is ordered to report to the United States Probation Department for the preparation of a presentence report. The Defendant has the right to allocute ...


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