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One Man, One Case, One Real Life Heist: United States of America v. Robert Charles Lamb

If you want to find out who your friends are, get a jail sentence. -Bukowski    
        I WAS THE HEAD LAW CLERK at FCI SEAGOVILLE, TEXAS, when I won this motion and I accidentally on purpose, left a dozen copies of the Order Granting my Pro-se Motion in the copy machine, and even though I didn't have any codefendant's, my two million dollars Real Life Heist was upwards of Twenty Million by the end of the week, after David had taken on Goliath, single handily wrangled a cash settlement from the government and a reduced sentence, and there were exactly a dozen eyewitnesses..

          IT WAS right after this incident I would look out into the front of the Inmate Law Library and there were ten or fifteen guys banging away on their cases with heavy law books and old typewriters, that people who have never been a law library would suddenly appear.  You would see them after the Noon Movement sitting off by them self-going through their files and appellate briefs like looking thru a drawer full of spoons for a fork.  Had no idea what they were doing except they needed help.
I could only schedule two guys a day because people were always showing up needing my immediate attention with a letter from the court.  It was about then that Terry's monthly income went from .38 cents a day to $500 a month to sit at the half door presumably handing out requested law books. At 6' 6" he looked like a pissed off Magnum PI and made sure I didn't have to raise my voice.
        AFTER ABOUT six months of sitting back to back while he watched the front and I could see out my ground floor large windows at the entire compound, and it's meticulously manicured grounds.  I could look over at him and it was like looking at a giant Belgium trained Sheppard dog watching for so much as an eye lash wiggle and he jump off that chair and run next door to the Education Building and get me a Coke out of the machine....
This was prison and I needed Terry.  One day I came back to my office after chow and five or six Black men had commandeered my desk, Terry's desk and just hanging around talking loud, just killing time.  I didn't say anything and went back out into the general public area and sat down and started reading law books. Terry would be here in a minute...

        I SEEN TERRY COMING down the length of the hall through large waist high windows with fine safety glass wires in them and only caught his eye for a flicker of a second and my heart began to race and he knew something was wrong. I didn’t look up and acted like I never seen him even after he enters the room and starts back the length of the hall back to the Office and Half-door standing open unattended. I didn’t look up but in my mind’s eye, I could see the incredulous look on his face getting Red after he see’s these “DC Nigger’s” they were called. Because they come from the US Capital they don’t think the laws apply to them. None of the other Blacks get along with them and everyone needs to be scared of them. The only reason they were even in the Federal System was the intricate snafu in Criminal Jurisdiction in the District of Columbia and ordinary State’s. They were a rare breed about to meet USMC First Sergeant, Scout and Sniper Terry Barrett who’s never off duty and he hasn’t been in a good mood in years. 
      I COULD HEAR THEM WHOOP’N IT UP back there in my office, talking loud and laughing at each other’s nonsense. Like the Sabine Indians south Louisiana and Texas they terrorized everywhere they went by rolling eight or nine, even fifteen deep. You know it was the DC Niggers to because when they leave tempers are flying; purses are missing, bloody noses and people on the way to the hospital and the cops on the way. With the Sabine’s it’s Party, Fuck and Fight. The DC Niggers it Fight, Steal and Fight; usually with each other. You see eight or nine of them together and they all have the same name, “DC.”
        I EXPECTED TO SEE THE BIG ONE with the biggest mouth with his feet up on my desk, flying head first over that half door and the sound of banging and body’s making that sickening thud when it slams into Portland Cement and people screaming. But I didn’t. It was all I could do to keep from turning around and seeing a Pissed Off Magnum PI standing in the doorway glaring at these obnoxious intruders, alternately looking out towards me with my back to him like I didn’t even know he was there. Just like you need a finger to push and test the temperature of a good Steak, you’re going to get tested. This was Terry’s big Test, he was either worth $500 a month to me or he wasn’t….
       THE SILENCE WAS DEFINING and I couldn’t stand it anymore and I slowly turn around as the biggest “DC” was walking past Terry with his head down staring at his feet. Single file and in unison the length of the large room and back down the hall I could see them and they never looked up staring down at cheap plastic government shower slippers like they were the coolest thing you’d ever seen. 
              BOBBY LAMB WAS CAUGHT IN A TRAFFIC stop on Interstate 15 North, in Meridian, Mississippi by a Mississippi Highway Patrolman’s training, and old Bobby, who was shaking like a leaf, and who at the first stanza of his Miranda Rights would shit in his pants right there on the side of the road even before they found the $372,748 in US Currency, and three (3) pounds of a Controlled Substance, to wit: Cocaine. In broad daylight.
                   BOBBY LAMB looked every bit of sixty-three, he was bent over with Farmer’s Bib Overhauls and moved around just like Old Jerry Campbell in the American Hogger’s reality show 0n A&E, and he always had his Bird dog with him. You wouldn’t think in a million years he’d be hauling hundreds of thousands of US Dollars and Kilograms of high-grade Cocaine, or that he had been doing it for years…. he had a couple of houses and was a longstanding and high ranking member and Judge of some beautiful Bird Dog Organization in Mississippi.   By the time he got to me he had pleaded guilty to Ten Year Mandatory Minimum sentence and received 20 after they discovered the length and depth of his involvement and attributed upwards of 50-kilo grams to him and his little band of run of the mill cohorts. He spent $100,000 just for a Rule 20 Motion to combine his offense with his home jurisdiction after they searched his house and found his kingpin headquarters in his bedroom…
        The United States Attorney fought hard for and won an Organizer Leader enhancement and he would have to do a minimum of twenty years and that’s what they gave him.  After an initial out lay of $50,000 Cash Bond, $75,000 for his first of a half a dozen lawyers, selling both his houses, borrowing money from any family member that had a dime and four years later he stopped by my Satellite Office at the Tennis courts at FCI Seagoville, one beautiful Texas day, and he was broke as the day was long.

        REMEMBER I TOLD YOU I could get your sentence and your conviction set aside with one wrong word? After the attorney’s wrangled every ill gotten gain he had ever made, and any his family was willing to part with.  Bobby told me he was trying not to shit his pants again when the young Magistrate finally called this tawdry mess to order at precisely nine am and Bobby probably couldn’t wait long.   The Honorable Judge Brevard Hand flew in the courtroom with a hurried manner glancing around suspiciously, finally looking at Bobby turning bluer by the minute.  He sits down hurriedly and you could hear his Clerk’s and the Stenographer huddling together for a moment so everyone was on the same page.  Probably telling him this is the old idiot that got caught on the interstate a few years ago over in Mississippi, and shit in the back of the Patrol Car, and everyone knew exactly what Case this was.
          "Is the Government ready?" 
        "Yes, your Honor! Ginny Granade for the Government’ Your Honor...."
          "Riggs and Riley' for the defense your Honor, Michael Riley, was ready.  Bobby’s got a worried look on his face like he’s been ready. . .
         TWENTY YEARS into his stint as Chief Federal District Court Judge, he could recite the federal Substance Abuse code, Title 21 USC 841 and its Penalty section in his sleep, and he had it all but memorized.  I told you if they fall off the path I might be able to get you back in Court?  This vetran Judge judge ran slap off the road and a routine ten minute Rule 11 Hearing resulted in a bungled Guilty Plea and Bobby about to bust a new one, when I showed him the mistake I found which got him sent straight to the house.
        IN THE SPRING OF 1966, Fast Eddy Boykin went on a three-day flyer and crime spree committing a series of armed robberies in deep southern sleep town of Mobile, Alabama. The victims, in each case, were local shopkeepers open at night who were forced by a gunman to hand over money. “While robbing one grocery store, the assailant fired his gun once, sending a bullet through a door into the ceiling.  A few days earlier, in a drugstore, the robber had allowed his gun to discharge in such a way that the bullet, on a ricochet from the floor, struck a customer in the leg.” Shortly thereafter, a local grand jury returned five indictments against Fast Edwin, a 27-year-old Negro, for common law robbery -- an offense punishable in Alabama by death. Three days later when Fast Eddy still had a hangover from Hell, plead guilty to the Indictment at his initial appearance and was sentenced to death. Boykin v. Alabama, 395 U.S. 238 (1969).

         I GOT BOBBY LAMB BACK IN COURT by coming in the back door.  In American jurisprudence ( the science of law) the very last thing the judge is supposed to ask you if you’re convicted of a felony, is, 'if you have anything to say before sentencing is imposed.  I’ve done it so many times now it’s almost a cheap shot for me, but just like that one word “should,” instead of “must,” requires outright reversal, the Right of Allocution is equally important. That’s the Second to the Last. The very last and the thing I had them over a barrel about was beside failing to provide mandatory Right of Allocution, the Sentencing court failed to advise him of his Right to Appeal.  Another dead bang error I’ve sent more than a few back to Court for Resentencing, whether they had anything to say or not. 
           WITHIN A FEW WEEKS THE INMATE LAW LIBRARY was running like a smooth running machine, I didn’t need any money and decided to spend my time on the one thing no one in the real world has time to: I was going to attempt to read every United States Supreme Court decision since I was born, which happened to correspond with the Second Edition of Lawyers Report’s, the unofficial High Court Reporter.  Pouring over the monthly Federal Reporter, containing every published federal appellate decision in the Eleven Federal Jurisdictions, I ran across a case that changed my life. Every one of the cases turned on a United States Supreme Court decision, and I read an ineffective assistance of counsel claim and during an evidentiary hearing, the district court placed the condemned prisoner’s lawyer on the stand.   A cursory examination revealed good intentions and bad education after he stated under oath that he had only read two United States Supreme Court decisions while in law school.  I decided that if he only read two cases and he was a lawyer, what if I read a couple hundred while maxing out my sentence over the next fourteen months? Starting at, 1 L.Ed.2d. 1 (1956), the United States v. ________, concerned an FBI informer who testified against low-ranking communist party members. I read 125 Volumes’ without stopping and when I looked up there were people standing in line to talk to me where ever I went in prison, offering me their entire fortune and first born son if I could get them out, but out here in the real world, I’m just another Schmo.
         THE CASE that put me on the map I didn’t even discover the error, but the Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans did.   
        Emilio M. Garza had been on the bench only months and in de novo review of another  Motion to Correct an Illegal Sentence Pursuant to Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure, Rule 35, known as a “Rule 35 Motion,” in the BOP (Bureau of Prisons) lingo, I did. The famed judge's first year on the bench’s meticulous examination identified an error requiring vacating his entire Guilty Plea and the very conviction itself. They would have to retry him after almost ten years after he pleads guilty and received a twenty-year sentence. The reason I won so many cases and had a good reputation was I would only assist someone in the preparation of legal documents only if I was convinced I would win, not a mere chance of success, which nearly all lawyers would take your money for.   By convinced I mean like with a Hughey v. United States in hand like when I made them swipe off two million dollars of restitution with the swipe of a pen.  I have to win or I ain’t fooling with it, that’s always been my motto.      I don't mess with no loosers....

By Mark Anthony Given.
4/27/2013 7:26:07 AM
Copyright 2013
All Rights Reserved

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