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United States v. Gonzalez

United States Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit

March 23, 2015

United States of America, Plaintiff - Appellee
v.
Cesar Alexis Gonzalez, Defendant - Appellant

Submitted: November 12, 2014.

Page 423

[Copyrighted Material Omitted]

Page 424

Appeal from United States District Court for the Southern District of Iowa - Davenport.

For United States of America, Plaintiff - Appellee: Adam Kerndt, Assistant U.S. Attorney, U.S. Attorney's Office, Davenport, IA.

Cesar Alexis Gonzalez, Defendant - Appellant, Pro se, Texarkana, TX.

For Cesar Alexis Gonzalez, Defendant - Appellant: Roger L. Sutton Sr., Sutton Law Office, Charles City, IA.

Before RILEY, Chief Judge, BEAM and GRUENDER, Circuit Judges.

OPINION

Page 425

GRUENDER, Circuit Judge.

Cesar Alexis Gonzalez entered a conditional guilty plea to conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine. The district

Page 426

court[1] sentenced him to 168 months' imprisonment. Gonzalez appeals both the denial of his motion to suppress and his sentence. We affirm.

I.

On March 19, 2012, Tony Young approached a United Parcel Service (" UPS" ) truck in Wellman, Iowa and attempted to give the driver a package. When the driver said he could not take the package because it lacked a proper label, Young anxiously offered to pay the driver with cash. The driver directed Young to a nearby UPS dropoff location. When the driver later arrived at that drop-off location, he saw a package from Young's address. Because of Young's earlier behavior and the package's bulky shape and because the package's expedited delivery schedule required it to be transported by plane, the driver contacted a supervisor at the Coralville, Iowa UPS facility. After discussing the driver's concern, the supervisor opened the package. Inside, she found a large stack of cash wrapped in foil, which she brought to the attention of another supervisor, Shawn Reinhart.

Reinhart and UPS security consulted local police officer Eric Weber, and UPS decided to send the package to its intended recipient, Cesar Gonzalez, in Yuma, Arizona. Officer Weber then contacted Yuma police, who photographed the package when it arrived in Arizona. Citing concern for employee safety, UPS declined the police request to deliver the package normally. Instead, UPS allowed police to leave a note at Gonzalez's residence stating that ...


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