Hull v. USA
ORDER Dismissing 2255 Petition; Denying as Moot 2 MOTION for status filed by Aaron Hull, 4 MOTION for status filed by Aaron Hull, 3 MOTION for status filed by Aaron Hull. For the above-stated reasons, the Court FINDS that Hull's p etition (Doc. 1 ) is second or successive under 28 U.S.C. § 2255, and, as such, he must seek authorization from the Seventh Circuit prior to filing it in this Court. Until he receives such authorization, this Court lacks jurisdiction over his claims. Petitioner Aaron Hull's motion to vacate, set aside, or correct sentence is DISMISSED without prejudice. His pending motions for status (Docs. 2 , 3 , 4 ) are DENIED as MOOT. Signed by Judge David W. Dugan on 10/13/2020. (kll)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF ILLINOIS
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,
Case No. 18-cv-2161-DWD
ORDER DISMISSING SECOND OR SUCCESSIVE § 2255 PETITION
DUGAN, District Judge:
In Case No. 11-CR-30042-SMY, Petitioner Aaron Hull negotiated a plea agreement
and pleaded guilty to one count of possession of a firearm by a previously convicted felon
and one count of possession of ammunition by a previously convicted felon, all in
violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 922(g) and 924(e)(1). On December 16, 2011, Hull was sentenced
to a 180-month term of imprisonment to be followed by three years of supervised
released. He did not appeal his sentence.
On June 9, 2016, the Court received a letter from Hull that requested relief under
Johnson v. United States, 576 U.S. 591 (2015), which held that the residual clause of the
Armed Career Criminal Act was void for vagueness and was found to apply retroactively
in Welch v. United States, 136 S.Ct. 1257 (2016). (See 11-CR-30042, Doc. 41). The Court
instructed the Clerk of Court to file Hull’s letter as a new action seeking relief under 28
U.S.C. § 2255. (11-30042, Doc. 42). Hull pursued Johnson-based relief in Case No. 16-cv646-SMY. On July 12, 2018, Hull’s § 2255 petition was denied on the merits.
On December 10, 2018, Hull filed the instant motion to vacate, set aside, or correct
sentence pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2255. He labeled his motion as a “Petition for Second
and Successive 2255.” (Doc. 1, p. 1). Rule 4(b) of the RULES GOVERNING SECTION 2255
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURTS requires the presiding judge to
review the motion and, “[i]f it plainly appears from the motion, any attached exhibits,
and the record of prior proceedings that the moving party is not entitled to relief, [to]
dismiss the motion.”
In his petition, Hull raises two grounds for relief. First, he alleges that his sentence
is unconstitutional in the wake of the Supreme Court’s decision in Mathis v. United States,
136 S.Ct. 2243 (2016), in which the Court held that the Iowa burglary statute was not a
violent felony offense under the Armed Career Criminal Act. Second, Hull alleges that
his sentence is unconstitutional because it is in excess of the 120-month statutory
maximum that believes applies to his offenses of conviction.
The hurdle for Hull is that this action is not his first attempt at securing relief
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2255. A prisoner has one opportunity to challenge a conviction
and sentence following a direct appeal. 28 U.S.C. § 2255(a), (h). To bring a second
challenge to his conviction or sentence under § 2255, the Court of Appeals must certify
the petition and must authorize the petitioner to file it in the district court. 28 U.S.C. 2255
(h). Without that authorization, a district court lacks jurisdiction over the later-filed
petition. See Kramer v. United States, 797 F.3d 493, 498 (7th Cir. 2015).
The threshold question is whether Hull’s instant petition is a “second or successive
habeas corpus application” made under 28 U.S.C. § 2255. Hull’s petition collaterally
attacks the same sentence that he challenged in Case No. 16-cv-646-SMY, and he received
a ruling on the merits of his petition in that action. While a petition need not be
adjudicated on the merits to qualify a later-filed petition as “second or successive,” a
petition challenging the same conviction and sentence already challenged so qualifies.
See Vitrano v. U.S., 643 F.3d 229, 233-34 (7th Cir. 2011). As a result, the instant petition is
“second or successive” as contemplated by 28 U.S.C. § 2255, and Hull must seek
certification and authorization from the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals before
pursuing the claims raised in this action.
For the above-stated reasons, the Court FINDS that Hull’s petition (Doc. 1) is
second or successive under 28 U.S.C. § 2255, and, as such, he must seek authorization
from the Seventh Circuit prior to filing it in this Court. Until he receives such
authorization, this Court lacks jurisdiction over his claims. Petitioner Aaron Hull’s
motion to vacate, set aside, or correct sentence is DISMISSED without prejudice. His
pending motions for status (Docs. 2, 3, 4) are DENIED as MOOT.
Dated: October 13, 2020
DAVID W. DUGAN
United States District Judge
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