The Court continues its in-house disagreement on the use of changes in the law as a basis for compassionate release. In today's United States v. McCall, a divided panel of the Court holds " a court may consider a nonretroactive change in the law as one of several factors forming extraordinary and compelling circumstances qualifying for sentence reduction under 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(1)(A)." In doing so, the panel determined that while prior precedent held that a change in the law may not be the sole basis for compassionate release, it could, along with other factors, qualify as a proper basis for a reduction in sentence. The panel further determined that cases holding otherwise improperly ignored the Court's ruling in United States v. Owens, 996 F.3d 755 (6th Cir. 2021), and thus were not binding. In his dissent, Judge Kethledge noted that "for the district courts in this circuit, our decision in this case renders the law on the issue presented unknowable."
It would seem this case tees up the matter for en banc review. Stay tuned!!