UNITED STATES of America, Plaintiff - Appellee, v. Courtney Dione COWAN, Defendant - Appellant.
Decided: September 17, 2019
Before KING and THACKER, Circuit Judges, and TRAXLER, Senior Circuit Judge.
Frank A. Abrams, LAW OFFICE OF FRANK ABRAMS, PLLC, Arden, North Carolina, for Appellant. R. Andrew Murray, United States Attorney, Anthony J. Enright, Assistant United States Attorney, OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES ATTORNEY, Charlotte, North Carolina, for Appellee.
Courtney Dione Cowan appeals the eight-month sentence imposed following the district court’s revocation of his supervised release. Cowan argues that the district court erred in failing to allow him to challenge his criminal history category. While this appeal was pending, Cowan was released from custody.
“When a case or controversy ceases to exist—either due to a change in the facts or the law—the litigation is moot, and the court’s subject matter jurisdiction ceases to exist also.” Porter v. Clarke, 852 F.3d 358, 363 (4th Cir. 2017) (internal quotation marks omitted). “Because mootness is jurisdictional, we can and must consider it even if neither party has raised it.” United States v. Ketter, 908 F.3d 61, 65 (4th Cir. 2018). Because Cowan already has served his eight-month sentence and faces no further term of supervised release, there is no longer a live controversy regarding the district court’s decision not to allow him to challenge his criminal history category. Cowan’s challenge to his sentence is therefore moot. See United States v. Hardy, 545 F.3d 280, 283-84 (4th Cir. 2008).
Accordingly, we dismiss the appeal for lack of jurisdiction. We dispense with oral argument because the facts and legal contentions are adequately presented in the materials before this court and argument would not aid the decisional process.
Dismissed by unpublished per curiam opinion.
Unpublished opinions are not binding precedent in this circuit.
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