Past successes do not guarantee the same result in future cases. But you can still learn a lot about an attorney based on what he has done before. If you search “Caleb Kruckenberg” on PACER or Westlaw you will find a ton of entries. I have tried lots of cases and argued lots of appeals. More importantly, you will also see that I win cases.
United States v. Jesus Domingo Martinez-Cruz, — F.3d —-, No. 15-2167 (10th Cir. 2016)
Mr. Martinez-Cruz was convicted of, among other things, unlawful re-entry after deportation. Section 2L1.2 of the federal sentencing guidelines provided a significant sentencing enhancement if a defendant had a prior “drug trafficking” conviction. Mr. Martinez-Cruz had a prior conviction for conspiracy to possess a controlled substance with the intent to distribute it, under 21 U.S.C. Section 846. The district court decided that that conviction counted, and applied the enhancement. The district court also, for good measure, said it was “absurd” to argue against the enhancement.
The Tenth Circuit reversed the judgment and remanded for resentencing. In doing so, it agreed with me, and Mr. Martinez-Cruz, that the enhancement was improper, even though it meant disagreeing with two other Circuit Courts.
United States v. Jesus Bustillos-Ramirez, 15-cr-04405-KG (D. N.M. 2016)
Mr. Bustillos-Ramirez, was arrested while crossing the international border from Mexico into the United States. Agents found more than seven pounds of cocaine hidden in the jeep that he was driving. The Government valued the cocaine at about a quarter of a million dollars. Mr. Bustillos-Ramirez was charged with federal drug offenses, and, needless to say, was looking at a mandatory minimum sentence.
I tried the case before a jury, who, after four days, agreed that Mr. Bustillos-Ramirez was not guilty. Instead of going to prison, he went home with his family.
Patrick Pacheco v. United States, 15-cv-01183-KG-WPL (D. N.M. 2015)
Mr. Pacheco was serving a 15-year prison sentence for being a felon in possession of a firearm. His sentence was a mandatory minimum term that had been imposed pursuant to the Armed Career Criminal Act. While he was serving his sentence, I got involved and filed a habeas corpus petition on his behalf, arguing that his sentence was unconstitutional. We prevailed, and he was sentenced to time-served and immediately released from custody.
United States v. Paul LeCompte, 800 F.3d 1209 (10th Cir. 2015)
Mr. LeCompte was serving a term of supervised release for a prior conviction. His probation officer found he had violated his release conditions on an extremely tenuous basis. I argued to the district court that it would be unconstitutional to revoke Mr. LeCompte’s release on the basis alleged. The district court disagreed and sent Mr. LeCompte back to prison. I took the case to the Court of Appeals, who reversed the district court and issued an important published opinion that clearly defined a trial court’s power to revoke a person’s release.
State v. Annette Fuschini, 2014
Ms. Fuschini and her boyfriend were driving in Ms. Fuschini’s car. Both she and her boyfriend were heavily intoxicated. They began arguing and Ms. Fuschini’s boyfriend hit her in the face. Ms. Fuschini stopped the car and told him to get out. Tragically, while Ms. Fuschini tried to pull away in her car, she struck her boyfriend and killed him.
The State of New Mexico believed Ms. Fuschini murdered her boyfriend, and sought a life sentence.
After a multi-day jury trial, the jury agreed that this was a terrible accident, not intentional murder. The jury convicted her of involuntary manslaughter, the charge my co-counsel and I had asked them to convict her of. Instead of receiving a life sentence, Ms. Fuschini was sentenced to 3 and 1/2 years in prison.