Wilson v. USA

Filing 2

ORDER denying Petition to Vacate Sentence under 28 USC 2255. Signed by Judge Larry Alan Burns on 10/27/16.(kas)

Download PDF
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 9 SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 10 11 UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, 12 CASE NO. 14CR2625/16CV1116-LAB Plaintiff, ORDER DENYING MOTION TO VACATE SENTENCE vs. 13 DARRYL ANGELO WILSON, 14 Defendant. 15 16 Darryl Angelo Wilson pled guilty to conspiracy to distribute cocaine in violation of 21 17 U.S.C. § 841(a)(1), and was to sentenced to 120 months in custody in July 2015. His 18 sentence was enhanced because he had previously been convicted of two “controlled 19 substance offenses,” which denominated him a Career Offender under the Sentencing 20 Guidelines. See United States Sentencing Guidelines (“USSG”), § 4B1.1(a) and § 4B1.2 21 (defining the term). Wilson waived his right to appeal in exchange for sentencing 22 concessions from the government, so his sentence became final when the Court signed the 23 Judgment on July 13, 2015. 24 Wilson has now filed a motion under 28 U.S.C. § 2255, contending that the Supreme 25 Court’s recent ruling in Johnson v. United States, __ U.S. __, 135 S. Ct. 2551 (2015) 26 requires that his sentence be vacated. In Johnson, the Court held that part of the Armed 27 Career Criminal Act, 18 U.S.C. § 924(e) – in particular, language in the so-called “residual 28 clause” that authorized a sentence enhancement based on a finding that a defendant’s prior -1- 14CR2625/16CV1116 1 conviction “present[ed] a serious potential risk of physical injury to another” – was 2 unconstitutionally vague and could not be relied on to support a sentence enhancement. 3 But the holding in Johnson doesn’t implicate the definition of “controlled substance 4 offense” in section 4B1.1(a) of the Sentencing Guidelines because that definition does not 5 include the forbidden residual clause language. Instead, section 4B1.2(b) says a “controlled 6 substance offense” is one that prohibits manufacturing, importing, exporting, distributing, 7 dispersing, or offering to sell a controlled substance or possessing a controlled substance 8 with the intent to do the same. Enhancing a defendant’s sentence because he has been 9 convicted of a prior controlled substance offense is proper when the elements of the prior 10 conviction match the generic definition of “controlled substance offense” under the section 11 4B1.2(b) definition. Taylor v. United States, 495 U.S. 575, 602 (1990). 12 Before he was sentenced in this case, Wilson was convicted of selling cocaine in 13 violation of California Health & Safety Code § 11352(a), and of conspiring to distribute 14 cocaine in violation of 21 U.S.C. § 841(b)(1)(A). PSR1 at 10. This Court previously found 15 that both offenses matched the generic federal definition of a “controlled substance offense” 16 – the federal offense categorically and the state offense under the modified categorical test 17 of Taylor. See United States v. Lee, 704 F.3d 785, 790 (9th Cir. 2012) (violation of H&S 18 §11352(a) by selling cocaine base falls squarely within the definition of “controlled substance 19 offense”); United States v. Stewart, 761 F.3d 993, 996 (9th Cir. 2014) (treating 21 U.S.C. 20 § 841(a)(1) as a “controlled substance offense”); United States v. Carr, 56 F.3d 38 (9th Cir. 21 1995) (same). See also United States v. Shumate, 329 F.3d 1026, 1029 (9th Cir. 2003) 22 (“controlled substance offense” includes conspiring to commit the offense; 23 comment (n.1)). 24 /// 25 /// 26 /// § 4B1.2, 27 28 1 “PSR refers to the Presentence Report filed in Wilson’s case on February 19, 2015. -2- 14CR2625/16CV1116 1 2 3 4 Johnson is inapposite to Wilson’s case – the Court didn’t rely on any version of any “residual clause” in imposing his sentence. His motion is DENIED. IT IS SO ORDERED. DATED: October 27, 2016 5 6 HONORABLE LARRY ALAN BURNS United States District Judge 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 -3- 14CR2625/16CV1116

Disclaimer: Justia Dockets & Filings provides public litigation records from the federal appellate and district courts. These filings and docket sheets should not be considered findings of fact or liability, nor do they necessarily reflect the view of Justia.


Why Is My Information Online?