Britton v. USA - 2255

Filing 2

MEMORANDUM OPINION. Signed by Judge Richard D. Bennett on 9/20/2017. (kw2s, Deputy Clerk)

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• IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE DISTRICT OF MARYLAND WILTON BRITTON, * Petitioner, * UNITED STATES OF l\MERICA, * * Respondent. * Civ. Action No. RDB-16-2003 Crim. Action No. RDB-05-038 * v. * * * * * * * * * * * * MEMORANDUM OPINION On April 14, 2005, Petitioner Wilton Britton ("Petitioner" or "Britton") pled guilty to bank robbery, in violation of 18 U.S.C ~ 2113(a)(f). (ECF No. 17.) During Petitioner's sentencing hearing, this Court found that Petitioner's bank robbery offense and prior convictions for federal bank robbery and escape qualified as "crimes of violence" under United States Sentencing Guideline (U.S.S.G.) ~ 4B1.2. As a result, Petitioner was deemed a career offender and sentenced to a term of one-hundred and eighty (180) months imprisonment. Ten years later, the Supreme Court in jolJl1Jon v. United States, _ U.S. _, 135 S. Ct. 2551 (2015) struck down the residual clause of the .Armed Career Criminal Act (ACCA), 18 U.S.C ~ 924(e)(2)(B)(ii) as unconstirutionally Defender (OFPD) vague. The Office of the Federal Public then filed a motion on behalf of Petitioner under 28 U.S.C ~ 2255, arguing that because the "Career Offender" provision in the Sentencing Guidelines includes 1 the identical residual clause as that struck down in jolJllson, it is also void for vagueness. (ECF No. 19.) In 2017, however, the Supreme Court held in Beddes v. Ullited States, _ S. Ct. 886 (2017) that the advisory guidelines Subseguent were not subject U.S. _, to johnson 137 challenges. to that decision, the OFPD informed Petitioner that in light of Beckles it would no longer be able to represent him. On September 18, 2017, the OfPD filed a Motion to Withdraw as Counsel (ECF No. 21), which this Court granted. (ECF No. 22.) Pending before this Court is Petitioner's I\[otion to Correct U.S.c. ~ 2255. (ECF No. 19.) The parties' submissions is necessary. Sentence Under 28 have been reviewed, and no hearing See Local Rule 105.6 (D. Md. 2016). For the reasons stated herein, Petitioner Britton's Motion to Correct Sentence Under 28 U.s.c. ~ 2255 (ECF No. 19) is DENIED. ANALYSIS Petitioner's while sentencing whether only claim is that under johnson, the residual clause that this Court applied Petitioner Petitioner's is void for vagueness. Therefore, bank robbery offense and prior convictions this Court must determine for federal bank robbery and escape gualify as crimes of violence under the remaining "enumerated offenses" clause or "force" clause of U.S.S.G ~ 4B 1.2(a). As the OFPD Beddes this argument Sentencing Guidelines stated in its Motion is without merit. 1\S to Withdraw as Counsel, however, in light of the Beckie!" Court stated, "[b]ecause the advisory are not subject to a due process vagueness challenge, ~ 4B1.2(a)'s residual clause is not void for vagueness." 137 S. Ct. at 897. for this reason, Petitioner's pending Motion to Vacate (ECF No. 19) is DENIED. 2 CONCLUSION For the reason stated above, Petitioner Britton's Motion to Correct Sentence Under 28 U.S.c. ~ 2255 (ECF No. 19) is DENIED. Pursuant to Rule 11(a) of the Rules Governing Proceedings under 28 U.S.c. ~ 2255, the court is required to issue or deny a certificate of appealability when it enters a final order adverse to the applicant. A certificate of appealability is a "jurisdictional prerequisite" to an appeal from the court's earlier order. Uniled Slales v. l-ladde!1,475 F.3d 652, 659 (4th Cit. 2007). A certificate of appealability may issue "only if the applicant has made a substantial showing of the denial of a constitutional denies petitioner's that reasonable debatable right." 28 U.s.c. ~ 2253(c)(2). Where the court motion on its merits, a petitioner satisfies this standard by demonstrating jurists would find the court's assessment of the constitutional or wrong. See Sla,.k v. McDaniel, 529 U.S. 473, 484 (2000); see also Miller-EI v. Cockrell, 537 U.S. 322, 336-38 (2003). Because reasonable jurists would not find Britton's claims debatable, a certificate of appealability is DENIED. A separate Order follows. Dated: claims September 20, 2017 Richard D. Bennett United States District Judge 3

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