United States District Court, D. North Dakota
ORDER DENYING DEFENDANT'S MOTION TO WITHDRAW PLEA
L. Hovland, Chief Judge.
the Court is the Defendant's pro se “Motion to
Withdraw Plea of Guilty” filed on July 28, 2017.
See Docket No. 618. The Government filed a response
in opposition to the motion on August 10, 2017. See
Docket No. 625. For the reasons set forth below, the motion
April 14, 2016, the Defendant pled guilty to one count of
conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to
distribute methamphetamine (500 grams or more) in violation
of 21 U.S.C. § 846. See Docket Nos. 365 and
366. A Presentence Investigation Report was filed on July 1,
2016. See Docket No. 428. More than a year after
entering his plea of guilty, the Defendant now seeks to
withdraw his guilty plea because his constitutional rights
were allegedly violated at the change of plea hearing.
See Docket No. 619. The Defendant also references
newly discovered exculpatory evidence and diminished
capacity. However, he provides no explanation or discussion
of the newly discovered evidence or evidence of diminished
capacity. The Court finds these contentions wholly
guilty plea may be withdrawn before sentencing if the
defendant demonstrates a ‘fair and just reason' for
the withdrawal.” United States v. Mugan, 441
F.3d 622, 630 (8th Cir. 2006) (citing Fed. R. Crim. P.
11(d)(2)(B)). A district court may also consider whether the
defendant asserts innocence to the charges, the amount of
time between the guilty plea and the motion to withdraw, and
whether the withdrawal would prejudice the government.
United States v. Teeter, 561 F.3d 768, 770 (8th Cir.
2009). However, a district court need not address the
remaining considerations if the defendant fails to show a
fair and just reason for withdrawing his plea. Id.
change of plea hearing on April 14, 2016, the following
discussions occurred between the Court and the Defendant:
THE COURT: All right. So, Mr. Price, I need to visit with you
here on the record about your intention to plead guilty to
this particular crime. If you have any questions, sir, or if
you don't understand anything that we talk about this
afternoon, you're more than welcome to interrupt me and
ask questions at any time.
THE DEFENDANT: Yes, sir.
THE COURT: I know absolutely nothing about you, sir. All I
have in my file is the Indictment and the Plea Agreement and
the Plea Agreement Supplement. I know nothing of your
criminal history. I know nothing about your involvement in
this particular case, so I'll need to ask you a few
questions about that. But with respect to your background,
how old are you, sir, and where you lived most of your adult
THE DEFENDANT: I'm 43 years old, and the majority of my
life I've lived in Texas, until roughly eight years ago.
THE COURT: Are you a high school graduate?
THE DEFENDANT: Yes, sir.
THE COURT: Any schooling beyond high school?
THE DEFENDANT: Some community college courses, different
certifications through FEMA and ...