United States District Court, S.D. Mississippi, Northern Division
P. JORDAN III CHIEF UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Latoya Yevette Emmons seeks a reduction in her sentence. For
the following reasons, her Motion for Reconsideration 
March 12, 2018, the Court sentenced Emmons to 100 months
imprisonment for possessing a controlled substance with
intent to distribute. See 21 U.S.C. §
841(a)(1). Since being incarcerated, Emmons has apparently
used her time well, receiving 12 certificates for completing
educational courses. Based on this
“rehabilitative” programming, she now seeks an
order reducing her sentence. Def.'s Mot.  at 2.
courts have limited authority to reduce a sentence once
imposed and may not do so unless authorized by statute.
Dillon v. United States, 560 U.S. 817, 819 (2010).
Here, Emmons claims that 18 U.S.C. § 3742(e) allows a
court to reduce a sentence based on rehabilitation, and she
cites Pepper v. United States, 562 U.S. 476 (2011),
to support that argument.
with § 3742(e), that statute provided the considerations
courts of appeals were required to follow when reviewing
sentences imposed by district courts. The statute did not
create jurisdiction for a district court to reduce a sentence
post-judgment, and it was declared unconstitutional in
United States v. Booker, 543 U.S. 220, 265 (2005).
Accordingly, “Section 3472(e) does not itself provide
an independent means to modify [Emmons's]
sentence.” United States v. Thornton, No.
3:14-CR-164-L (03), 2016 WL 8203712, at *1 (N.D. Tex. Aug. 3,
2016) (citing United States v. Damayo, No.
1:10-CR-190-1-ODE-AJB, 2015 WL 4092456 (N.D.Ga. July 6,
does Pepper. 562 U.S. 476. In that case, the Supreme
Court held “that when a defendant's sentence has
been set aside on appeal, a district court at
resentencing may consider evidence of the
defendant's postsentencing rehabilitation[.]”
Id. at 481 (emphasis added). Here, Emmons's
sentence was not set aside on appeal, and she is not before
the Court for resentencing; Pepper is inapplicable.
See Thornton, 2016 WL 8203712, at *1 (concluding
that Pepper does not allow district courts to reduce
sentences based on rehabilitation); see also United
States v. Houston, No. 3:93-CR-277-N (01), 2019 WL
2251246, at *2 (N.D. Tex. May 1, 2019) (explaining that
Pepper does not apply “on a motion to reduce a
sentence”), report and recommendation adopted,
2019 WL 2249720 (N.D. Tex. May 24, 2019). Accordingly,
Emmons's arguments do not entitle her to
said, Emmons is proceeding pro se, so the Court must
liberally construe her pleadings. See Erickson v.
Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007). And while neither §
3472(e) nor Pepper provides a basis for the Court to
reconsider the sentence, the First Step Act does when
“extraordinary and compelling” reasons exist. 18
U.S.C. § 3582(c)(1)(A)(i). But even assuming
Emmons's motion can be construed in that light, it still
faces two problems. First, an inmate may not file a motion
under the First Step Act before exhausting administrative
remedies through the Federal Bureau of Prisons. See
18 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(1)(A). There is no indication in the
motion that Emmons has done so. Second, Emmons bases her
motion entirely on her claim that she has been rehabilitated.
See Def.'s Mot.  at 1-2. Yet
“[r]ehabilitation of the defendant alone shall not be
considered an extraordinary and compelling reason” for
sentence reduction. 28 U.S.C. § 994(t). Accordingly,
Emmons has not demonstrated a basis for reconsidering her
should be commended for productively investing her time while
incarcerated. But for the reasons stated, the Court lacks
authority to reduce her sentence as she requests. Her motion
 is therefore denied.
ORDERED AND ADJUDGED