UNITED STATES of America, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. Lance Lamont LAVERT, Defendant-Appellant.
Decided: December 09, 2020
Before: WALLACE, CLIFTON, and BRESS, Circuit Judges.
Matthew Craig Brehm, Assistant U.S. Attorney, Brandon Kimura, Special Assistant U.S. Attorney, Daniel Earl Zipp, Assistant U.S. Attorney, Office of the US Attorney, San Diego, CA, for Plaintiff - Appellee David James Zugman, Attorney, Burcham & Zugman, San Diego, CA, for Defendant - Appellant
Lance Lamont Lavert was convicted by jury of Hobbs Act robbery under 18 U.S.C. § 1951(a), brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence under 18 U.S.C. § 924(c), and being a felon in possession of a firearm under 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1). He appeals his brandishing conviction, as well as the 189-month sentence he received for the three offenses. We have jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. § 1291. We affirm.
Lavert contends that the court should vacate his conviction for brandishing a firearm “during and in relation to any crime of violence” because Hobbs Act robbery does not categorically qualify as a crime of violence under § 924(c)(3)(A). We review de novo and conclude that this argument is foreclosed by circuit precedent. See United States v. Dominguez, 954 F.3d 1251, 1256, 1260–61 (9th Cir. 2020).
Lavert also asserts that the district court abused its discretion when it imposed an enhancement under U.S.S.G. § 2B3.1(b)(3)(B) for causing serious bodily injury to one of his victims. While Lavert concedes that the victim was injured, he argues that the injuries were not sufficiently serious to warrant the four-level enhancement. We disagree. The record shows that Lavert struck the victim on the head with a gun, causing a laceration requiring nine staples, continuing treatment for trauma and the head injury, and an extended medical leave from work. On this record, the district court did not abuse its discretion in imposing the enhancement. See U.S.S.G. § 1B1.1 cmt. n.1(M) (“serious bodily injury” is “injury involving extreme physical pain or the protracted impairment of a function of a bodily member, organ, or mental faculty; or requiring medical intervention such as surgery, hospitalization, or physical rehabilitation”); United States v. Gasca-Ruiz, 852 F.3d 1167, 1170, 1175 (9th Cir. 2017) (en banc) (stating standard of review and explaining that a court abuses its discretion only if the decision to impose the enhancement is “illogical” or “implausible” based on the facts in the record); United States v. Corbin, 972 F.2d 271, 272-73 (9th Cir. 1992) (affirming application of “serious bodily injury” enhancement when the victim was hit “on the head with a metal object resembling a gun, causing a laceration which required a two-layer closure using more than 25 sutures”).
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