Smith v. United States Of America
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATIONS denying re 2 MOTION to Appoint Counsel filed by Andrique Smith, denying 1 Motion to Vacate/Set Aside/Correct Sentence (2255) filed by Andrique Smith Objections to R&R due by 4/25/2017. Signed by Magistrate Judge G. R. Smith on 4/11/17. (trb)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF GEORGIA
Scott L. Poff, Clerk
United States District Court
By tblanchard at 3:45 pm, Apr 11, 2017
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,
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WII 1 1 EIJ1IIYVU[Iii
Guilty-plea convicted of possession with intent to distribute cocaine
in violation of 21 U.S.C. § 841(a)(1), Andrique Smith seeks to exploit the
Supreme Court's decision in Mathis v. United States, 579 U.S. , 136
S. Ct. 2243 (2016),1 to neutralize his enhanced sentence. Doc. 85;2 see
also does. 1 (indictment), 53 (plea agreement), 55 (judgement for 200
months' imprisonment), & 74 (mandate of Eleventh Circuit affirming
conviction and sentence). He believes that Mathis "may" affect the
Mathis elucidated the Supreme Court's holding in Johnson v. United States, 576
U.S. -, 135 S. Ct. 2551 (2015), to explain how courts must divine whether a criminal
defendant's prior convictions counted as "violent felonies" under the Armed Career
Criminal Act (ACCA), 18 U.S.C. 924(e)(2)(B).
2 The Court is citing to the criminal docket in CR608-030 unless otherwise noted,
and all page numbers are those imprinted by the Court's docketing software.
Sentencing Guidelines-based enhancement of his sentence. Does. 85 at 5
& 12; 85-1 at 2-3 (arguing that his "several prior convictions" for
violations of O.C.G.A. § 16-13-30(a) -- admittedly "controlled substance
offense[s] as defined by § 4131.2" of the Sentencing Guidelines -- are no
longer considered enhancement-triggering offenses post-Mathis).
motion must be denied per preliminary § 2255 Rule 4 review.
Smith was sentenced as a "career offender" under the Sentencing
Guidelines -- not the AC CA. Presentence Investigative Report at ¶ 27
(determining he qualified as a "career offender" under U.S.S.G. § 4131.1
based on four felony controlled substances offenses and three felony
crimes of violence). 3 And Johnson, which invalidated the ACCA
residual clause, does not extend to the identical language of the
Sentencing Guidelines' residual clause.
Beckles v. United States, -
U.S. -, 2017 WL 855781 (Mar. 6, 2017); see also United States v.
Matchett, 802 F.3d 1185 (11th Cir. 2015) (same). Thus, Mathis (which
clarified the proper approach to be utilized in evaluating predicate
See PSR at ¶I 37 (aggravated assault), 39 (possession with intent to distribute
marijuana and cocaine), 41 (robbery by force), 42 (possession with intent to distribute
marijuana), 43 (aggravated assault), 44 (possession with intent to distribute cocaine)
& 48 (possession with intent to distribute marijuana); see also doe. 55 (enhanced
sentence for 200 months' incarceration).
crimes of conviction for ACCA-enhancements)
has zero impact on
movant's sentencing. Smith has no claim for relief.
Finally, Smith asks that the Court appoint counsel because he
"has no legal experience or education" and "doesn't have the ability to
properly present his claims in this Court as would a professional
trained and experienced attorney." Doc. 86 at 2. The Rules Governing
§ 2255 Cases provide that appointment of counsel is proper if an
evidentiary hearing is needed or if certain discovery is required,
provided that the movant qualifies under 18 U.S.C. § 3006A(g). Rules
6(a), 8(c). Movant has demonstrated his ability to file appropriate
pleadings seeking § 2255 relief, and neither an evidentiary hearing nor
discovery is warranted. Jones v. United States, 2016 WL 3476429 at *4
n. 5 (S.D. Ga. June 21, 2016), adopted, 2016 WL 4472973 (S.D. Ga. Aug.
24, 2016); Bing v. United States, 2015 WL4092699 at* 3(S.D. Ga. July
6, 2015), adopted, 2015 WL 675168 (S.D. Ga. Nov. 4, 2015). Movant's
application for appointment of counsel, doc. 86, is therefore DENIED.
In summary, Andrique Smith's 28 U.S.C. § 2255 motion should be
DENIED. For the reasons set forth above, it is plain that he raises no
substantial claim of deprivation of a constitutional right. Accordingly,
no certificate of appealability should issue. 28 U.S.C. § 2253; Fed. R.
App. P. 22(b); Rule 11(a) of the Rules Governing Habeas Corpus Cases
Under 28 U.S.C. § 2255 ("The district court must issue or deny a
certificate of appealability when it enters a final order adverse to the
applicant."). Any motion for leave to appeal in forma pauperis therefore
This Report and Recommendation (R&R) is submitted to the
district judge assigned to this action, pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
§ 636(b)(1)(B) and this Court's Local Rule 72.3.
Within 14 clays of
service, any party may file written objections to this R&R with the
Court and serve a copy on all parties. The document should be
captioned "Objections to Magistrate Judge's Report and
Recommendations." Any request for additional time to file objections
should be filed with the Clerk for consideration by the assigned district
After the objections period has ended, the Clerk shall submit this
R&R together with any objections to the assigned district judge. The
district judge will review the magistrate judge's findings and
recommendation pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(C). The parties are
advised that failure to timely file objections will result in the waiver of
rights on appeal. 11th Cir. R. 3-1; see Symonett v. VA. Leasing Corp.,
648 F. App'x 787, 790 (11th Cir. 2016); Mitchell v. U.S., 612 F. App'x
542, 545 (11th Cir. 2015).
SO REPORTED AND RECOMMENDED, this 11th clay of
UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF GEORGIA
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