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United States Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit.

UNITED STATES of America, Plaintiff-Appellee v. Ronee Damien WILLIAMS, Defendant-Appellant

No. 18-10176

Decided: September 12, 2019

Before SMITH, DENNIS, and DUNCAN, Circuit Judges. Gail A. Hayworth, Leigha Amy Simonton, Assistant U.S. Attorney, U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Texas, Dallas, TX, for Plaintiff-Appellee Christopher Michael McCaffrey, Law Offices of Christopher McCaffrey, Dallas, TX, for Defendant-Appellant

Ronee Damien Williams appeals his conviction and 15-year sentence for possessing with intent to distribute a controlled substance, possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime, and being a felon in possession of a firearm. He argues that the district court erred by admitting a hand-written letter, purportedly written by him, and the application of an enhancement based on the letter. See U.S.S.G. § 3C1.1.

Williams has not shown that the district court abused its discretion by admitting the exhibit into evidence. See United States v. Jimenez Lopez, 873 F.2d 769, 771 (5th Cir. 1989). The content of the hand-written letter was sufficient to support a finding that Williams was the author. See United States v. Isiwele, 635 F.3d 196, 200 (5th Cir. 2011); Fed. R. Evid. 901(a).

With regard to the enhancement, because the facts in the presentence report (PSR) had an adequate evidentiary basis and Williams did not challenge the facts in the PSR or offer rebuttal evidence, the district court was permitted to adopt the PSR without further inquiry. See United States v. Harris, 702 F.3d 226, 230 (5th Cir. 2012). Given that the enhancement applies to attempts to obstruct justice, Williams has not shown that the district court erred, plainly or otherwise, by finding that Williams “attempted to have ‘J.J.’ take responsibility for the drugs” and applying the enhancement. See Puckett v. United States, 556 U.S. 129, 135, 129 S.Ct. 1423, 173 L.Ed.2d 266 (2009).




PER CURIAM:* FN* Pursuant to 5th Cir. R. 47.5, the court has determined that this opinion should not be published and is not precedent except under the limited circumstances set forth in 5th Cir. R. 47.5.4.

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