Submitted September 12, 2014
Appeal from United States District Court for the Western District of Missouri - Kansas City.
For United States of America, Plaintiff - Appellee: John E. Cowles, Assistant U.S. Attorney, Philip M. Koppe, Assistant U.S. Attorney, U.S. ATTORNEY'S OFFICE, Kansas City, MO.
For Kenvis Norwood, Defendant - Appellant: Melanie Susan Morgan, MORGAN & PILATE, Kansas City, MO.
Kenvis Norwood, Defendant - Appellant, Pro se, Atlanta, GA.
Before RILEY, Chief Judge, SMITH and KELLY, Circuit Judges.
Kenvis Norwood appeals from the sentence imposed by the district court for conspiracy to commit bank fraud. Norwood argues that the district court improperly enhanced his sentence for use of sophisticated means and for the unauthorized use of a means of identification to produce or obtain another means of identification. We affirm.
Norwood pleaded guilty to one count of knowingly and intentionally conspiring with Exavius Tatum, Joe Javonta Brown, Patrick Julius Giles, Jr., Gregory Jennings, D'Andre Carter, Tyrique Eggleston, Corey Odom, Vincent Mitchell, and William Brandon McCaslin to commit bank fraud in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1349. The scheme started on October 22, 2011, with the theft of United States mail from approximately 20 businesses in Olathe, Kansas. Shortly thereafter, banks noticed that computer-generated counterfeit checks were being cashed from the very accounts of the businesses that had reported the mail theft. The scheme spread to Leawood, Kansas and Kansas City, Missouri, where further police investigation led to the discovery of the scheme's modus operandi. Two men recruited the homeless to go to banks and cash their computer-generated counterfeit checks.
Norwood became involved with the scheme in May 2012 when he traveled from his home in Atlanta, Georgia to Springfield, Missouri, with his friend and coconspirator Tyrique Eggleston. Eggleston told Norwood about his plan to recruit homeless men to cash counterfeit checks, and he wanted Norwood to accompany and assist him. Norwood agreed. During their stay in Springfield, both Norwood and Eggleston stayed at the same hotel with coconspirators who printed the computer-generated fraudulent checks. On May 2, 2012, Eggleston recruited homeless men to cash checks while Norwood waited in their car. While Eggleston talked, Norwood mostly acted as security so Eggleston would not be threatened by the homeless men that were recruited. When recruiting these men, Eggleston and Norwood would ask for each person's ...