United States District Court, D. Massachusetts
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
ALLISON D. BURROUGHS U.S. DISTRICT COURT JUDGE
23, 2016, Hollis Owens (“Owens”) was charged by
complaint with violations of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1),
felon in possession of ammunition, and § 924(c)(1)(A),
possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking
crime. [ECF No. 1]. The government moved for detention. [ECF
No. 5]. On July 11, 2016, Magistrate Judge Donald L. Cabell
held a hearing on probable cause and detention. [ECF No. 10].
Judge Cabell subsequently entered a detention order, finding
that the government had proved by a preponderance of the
evidence that Owens' release would pose a risk of
nonappearance, and by clear and convincing evidence that
Owens' release would pose a risk of harm to the public.
[ECF No. 11]. On July 21, 2016, Owens was indicted by a grand
jury and charged with six counts, including being a felon in
possession of ammunition in violation of 18 U.S.C. §
922(g)(1) (count one), possession with intent to distribute a
controlled substance in violation of 18 U.S.C. §
841(a)(1) (counts two through five), and possession of a
firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime in
violation of 18 U.S.C. § 924(c)(1)(A) (count six). [ECF
No. 14]. On August 14, 2016, Owens filed a Motion to
Reconsider the Order of Detention based on the availability
of housing and employment, as well as the government's
clarification that Owens was likely not an armed career
criminal. [ECF No. 23]. The government opposed this motion.
[ECF No. 24]. Judge Cabell heard arguments on the motion at a
hearing, and subsequently denied release. [ECF Nos. 27, 30].
September 26, 2016, Owens appealed Judge Cabell's
detention order to this Court based on the same circumstances
underlying his motion for reconsideration. [ECF Nos. 23, 31].
The government filed an opposition. [ECF No. 35]. The Court
held a hearing on Owens' appeal of the order of detention
on November 10, 2016. [ECF No. 40]. For the reasons stated
herein, Owens' appeal of Judge Cabell's Order of
Detention [ECF No. 31] is DENIED.
following facts are taken from Owens' Pretrial Services
Report (“PSR”), the July 11, 2016 hearing before
Judge Cabell [ECF No. 10] and the admitted exhibit, the
hearing held before this Court on November 10, 2016 [ECF No.
40], and the Complaint [ECF No. 1].
age 43, was born in Boston, Massachusetts. His father died at
approximately age 36 following an accident. His mother died
at age 63 from cardiac arrest. Owens is currently in a
relationship with a women with whom he has four children. He
has three adult children from a previous relationship. Owens
has regularly used drugs since he was a young teenager, and
recently used cocaine to help cope with his mother's
death. While Owens has had inconsistent housing for some
time, his sister has now volunteered to house him at her home
in Worcester, Massachusetts if he is released from detention.
attended South Boston High School through the 10th
grade, but did not graduate. He received a certificate of
Culinary Arts and a certificate for Serve Safe from the
Jewish Vocation Program at Madison High School. For the last
two years, he has worked during the summer at his
cousin's window cleaning company. Owens has an employment
offer from his cousin, which Pretrial Services was able to
confirm. Prior to working for his cousin, Owens worked in
various food service positions, including as a cook, baker,
and kitchen supervisor. Owens has a significant criminal
record, including several prior restraining orders taken out
against him and prior gun convictions. Furthermore, he has
thirteen defaults on his record.
was arrested at his girlfriend's residence in Canton,
Massachusetts. He and his girlfriend have four children
together, ages three through 15. A search of a bedroom
allegedly used by Owens resulted in the seizure of $1, 860 in
cash, morphine pills, cocaine base, marijuana, a scale, clear
plastic bags, ammunition, and a loaded handgun. The gun,
ammunition, and cash were in locked safes. The bedroom also
contained an Eversource bill and life insurance application
in Owens' name.
the Bail Reform Act, upon a motion by the government, a
defendant must be detained pretrial if, after a hearing,
“the judicial officer finds that no condition or
combination of conditions will reasonably assure the
appearance of the person as required and the safety of any
other person and the community.” 18 U.S.C. §
3142(e). In making this determination, the court considers
the following factors:
(1) the nature and circumstances of the offense charged,
including whether the offense is a crime of violence, a
violation of section 1591, a Federal crime of terrorism, or
involves a minor victim or a controlled substance, firearm,
explosive, or destructive device;
(2) the weight of the evidence against the person;
(3) the history and characteristics of the person, ...