United States v. Davis

A government informant bought cocaine and heroin from Davis. Davis expressed an interest in robbery; the informant introduced him to an undercover agent of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, posing as a disgruntled drug courier. The agent recruited Davis to rob his employer’s stash house, which he said contained 50 kilograms of cocaine and was protected by armed guards. Davis recruited six others. On the day of the intended robbery, the crew (with semiautomatic firearms) met the agent in a parking lot and followed him to a warehouse for a planning session, which was recorded. The seven were arrested and charged with conspiring and attempting to possess, with the intent to distribute, five or more kilograms of cocaine, 21 U.S.C. 846; conspiring and attempting to affect interstate commerce by means of a robbery, 18 U.S.C. 1951(a), and knowingly possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime and a crime of violence, 18 U.S.C. 924(c)(1)(A). Because the prosecution was based on a “sting” initiated by the government, the defendants, all African-American, sought discovery of information relevant to potential racial profiling and selective prosecution. After announcing its intent not to comply with the order, the government sought dismissal without prejudice to facilitate an immediate appeal. The district court granted the request. The government filed an appeal under 18 U.S.C. 3731. The Seventh Circuit concluded that because the dismissal was without prejudice, allowing the government to re-file regardless of the outcome of the appeal, it was not a final order. View "United States v. Davis" on Justia Law