3582 Relief for Sole Parental Caregiver: US v. Bucci

US vs. Bucci shows compassionate release for relief for a federal inmate as the sole parental caregiver for his mother.

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There is relief under the Reduction in Sentence provisions in 18 U.S.C. § 3582, the “Compassionate Release” statute. United States of America vs. Bucci, 04-10194-WGY, decided September 16, 2019, is an example of what to use if inmates have “extraordinary and compelling” circumstances. The First Step Act redefines how 3582 relief may be applied.

History on Bucci Regarding Sentencing Commision

Bucci was sentenced to a term in prison.  While he was in prison he devoted much of his time to care for terminally ill inmates.  He filed a petition to reduce the Sentence under 18 USC § 3582 citing that he was the only available caregiver for his ailing mother. 

The District of Massachusetts held that the FIRST STEP Act did not change the statutory criteria for compassionate release. Yet, it did change the Procedures. Now, the Bureau of Prisons is no longer an obstacle to a court’s consideration of whether compassionate release is appropriate.  The court went on to say that “the Commission’s existing policy statement provides helpful guidance on the factors that support compassionate release, although it is not ultimately conclusive.” 

Further, the court determined that Mr. Bucci’s circumstances were similar to those that the Sentencing Commission specifically articulated as examples of “extraordinary and compelling reasons.” This can be found in the Sentencing Commission’s policy guidance in USSG 1B1.13 n.1 (C) (ii).  The Sentencing Commission was clear that an inmate being the “only available caregiver” for an ailing close member of his family is an “extraordinary and compelling reason” for compassionate release. This offered 3582 relief for Bucci.

Extraordinary and Compelling Circumstances in 3582 Relief

Turning to Mr. Bucci’s case, the court determined his role as the only potential caregiver for his ailing mother to be an “extraordinary and compelling reason” for compassionate release.  The court went on to note the documents submitted to the court demonstrated rehabilitation through his substantial time in prison. A large component of this included him caring for terminally ill inmates. 

The court granted Bucci’s motion to reduce his sentence. The case was set for a resentencing hearing.

Conclusion

There are many different ways to use the “Compassionate Release” statute to your benefit. It is proving to be a powerful tool. If you are interested in learning about how 3582 relief can help with sentencing reduction, please contact us today.