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United States v. Duquette

United States Court of Appeals, First Circuit

February 13, 2015

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Appellee,
v.
JOSEPH DUQUETTE, Defendant, Appellant

APPEAL FROM THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE DISTRICT OF MAINE. Hon. John A. Woodcock, Jr., U.S. District Judge.

Affirmed.

Lenore Glaser on brief for appellant.

Thomas E. Delahanty II, United States Attorney, and Margaret D. McGaughey, Assistant United States Attorney (Appellate Chief), on brief for appellee.

Before Howard, Selya, and Thompson, Circuit Judges.

OPINION

Page 315

THOMPSON, Circuit Judge.

Appellant Joseph Duquette (" Duquette" ) challenges the 15-year sentence meted out to him after pleading guilty to being a felon in possession of multiple firearms in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1) and the Armed Career Criminal Act (" ACCA" ), 18 U.S.C. § 924(e). We affirm.

I. BACKGROUND

The events culminating in Duquette's conviction and sentence occurred in January of 2011. Duquette's 14-year-old daughter, along with her brother (it is not clear from the record if he was Duquette's son), stayed at Duquette's home in Maine for a weekend visit. During their visit, Duquette's daughter saw a shotgun on the kitchen table. Duquette then showed her a pistol that he kept in his bedroom, and she noticed two loaded magazines on the dresser, too. Those magazines, Duquette explained, were for his " AK-47."

Duquette warned the two youngsters not to touch any of the guns, as they could " blow a hole in them [that is, the children]." This prohibition did not apply to him, though. After becoming upset at some point that weekend, Duquette threatened to kill his daughter's mother, got his pistol, and left the house. Fortunately, Duquette did not follow through with his threat, and he returned home a short while later. Nevertheless, his daughter was sufficiently worried that she later told her mother about what had happened. Her mother promptly contacted the police, who, after obtaining a search warrant, recovered a rifle, a shotgun, a pistol, and some ammunition from Duquette's home. Duquette's possession of these weapons was a problem for him because he had multiple prior felony convictions.

A grand jury charged Duquette with unlawful possession of firearms after having been convicted of multiple crimes classified as felonies under the laws of Maine. The indictment alleged that his prior felony convictions included unlawful trafficking in scheduled drugs, two convictions for possession of a firearm by a felon, trafficking in prison contraband, escape, assault on an officer, and--of import here--two burglary convictions. Given his record, the government alleged that Duquette's possession of firearms was in violation of 18 U.S.C. § § 922(g)(1)[1] and 924(e)[2],

Page 316

charges which carried with them the possibility of a mandatory 15-year minimum sentence. Duquette ...


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