Williams v. United States of America

Filing 13

MEMORANDUM OPINION. See Opinion for details. Signed by District Judge Robert E. Payne on 04/03/2017. Copy of mailed as directed to Plaintiff.(ccol, )

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IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF VIRGINIA IL. Riclunond Division APR - 3 20l7 SHANNON D. WILLIAMS, CLERK, U.S. DISTRICT COURT RICHMOND, VA Plaintiff, v. Civil Action No. 3:16CV626 UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Defendant. MEMORANDUM OPINION Following a bench trial, of various drug offenses, Shannon D. Williams was convicted three counts of murder while engaged in a drug conspiracy, and one count of use of a firearm during and in relation to a drug conspiracy, was sentenced to life in prison. 85 F. App'x 341, 345 resulting in death, and See United States v. Williams, The United States Court (4th Cir. 2004). of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit affirmed his convictions and sentence. Id. By January 20, 2006, the Court denied Williams's 28 U.S.C. motion. United 3:05CV100-JRS, Memorandum States v. Opinion Williams, 2006 WL 167659, at *6 Since that time, and entered § on 2255 3:02CR85-JRS, Nos. (E.D. Va. Jan. 20, 2006). Williams has inundated the Court with various challenges to his conviction and sentence. States v. Williams, No. (E .D. Va. Order June 10, 2015) 3:02-CR-85-1, See, e.g., United 2015 WL 11109787, at *l-3 {dismissing a "Motion for Declaratory Judgment" § 2255 and a motions); 4759248, at *3 Writ Rule of Williams Motion as v. prior as successive, Galindo, (E.D. Va. Sept. 4, Mandamus" (outlining 60 (b) legally No. 2013) 3: 11CV649, filings 2016, Court 2013 WL (dismissing "Motion for frivolous} ; frivolous unauthorized see seeking also his id. at release *1 from incarceration} . On July 26, "Complaint for the Declaratory ("Complaint, " ECF No. is not a 28 U.S.C. § 1. } received a Judgment document Fed. R. Civ. However, f rem P. 57" Williams indicates that "this action 2255, nor a successive § 2255" and that he "does not seek to contest his conviction or sentence." 1. } titled, the contents of the Complaint, (Id. at the Court discerns that Williams challenges the interpretation of one of his statutes of conviction, 21 U.S.C. § 848(e), the statute that criminalizes murder while engaged in a drug conspiracy involving (Id. at 3-8.) Williams third prong of 21 U. s. C. more than 50 grams of cocaine base. asks the Court 848 (e) (1) (A} the to \\declare that the is ambiguous" because he "continues to suffer from effects of an ambiguous constitutional concerns." statute, which also raised other (Id. at 9.) Williams' s Complaint once again challenges the validity of his conviction. As explained below, treated as a successive, unauthorized 28 2 the Complaint u.s.c. § must 2255 motion. be The Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 restricted the second successive or jurisdiction of the applications district for courts federal to habeas hear corpus relief by prisoners attacking the validity of their convictions and sentences by establishing a "gatekeeping mechanism." v. Turpin, 518 U.S. omitted) . 651, 657 Specifically, {1996) "[b]efore Felker {internal quotation marks a second or successive application permitted by this section is filed in the district court, the applicant shall move in the appropriate court of appeals for an order authorizing the district court to consider the application." The avoid Fourth the v. u.s.c. Circuit on and sentences Wines tock, § has bar convictions States 28 2244 {b) {3) {A). instructed successive 340 by collateral inventive F. 3d 200, motion pursuant to 28 U.S.C. that attacks labeling. 206 (4th Det. Ctr., motion for 451 (5th Cir. 911 F. 2d 1111, a new prohibition, coram certiorari, capias, impedit . . name makes Cir. may not on their See United 2003) . A 2255 "'provides the primary means § of collateral attack on a federal sentence.'" 218 F.3d 448, inmates 2000) 1113 Yusuf f, (quoting Cox v. Warden, (5th Cir. trial, arrest nobis, co ram of 1990) ) . Fed. "Call it a judgment, vobis, corpus, habeas Pack v. mandamus, querela, audita ejectment, quare or an application for a Get-out-of-Jail Card; the no difference. It 3 is substance that controls." Melton v. United States, (citation omitted) . 359 F.3d "Any motion 855, filed 857 in (7th 2004) district the Cir. court that imposed the sentence, and substantively within the scope of § 2255[(a)], is a motion under§ 2255, no matter what title the prisoner plasters on the cover. " Id. {citing Ramunno v. United States, 264 F.3d 723 (7th Cir. 2001)). As outlined challenges falls one above, of the statutes squarely within Gonzalez v. Crosby, Williams's the of which he ambit of 545 U.S. 524, Complaint 28 was U.S.C. 530-32 once again convicted and 2255 (a). § (2005) See (construing a motion as a successive "habeas corpus application" if it "seeks vindication" of "a claim" for relief from the criminal judgment, regardless Williams, court's of the title of 621 F. App'x 212, dismissal of the 212 as a successive received authorization prior "Motion from the Fourth to file a successive § 2255 motion. No. 3:02CR85-JRS Accordingly, motion (ECF (E.D. Va. Aug. and will jurisdiction. 4 Declaratory to hear a on August 2, most recent request United States v. Williams, 2, be for Circuit 2016) the Complaint is construed as a No. 1) v. (affirming this Indeed, the Fourth Circuit denied Williams' s States The Court has not § 2255 motion) . successive § 2255 motion from Williams. 2016, United {4th Cir. 2015) Williams' s Judgment" motion); ECF I No. successive dismissed for 268. § want 2255 of An appeal may not be taken from the final order in a 2255 § proceeding unless a judge issues a certificate of appealability { "COA"} . 28 U.S.C. § 2253 {c} {l) {B}. A COA will not issue unless a prisoner makes "a substantial showing of the denial of a constitutional requirement is debate whether should have issues satisfied {or, been only were proceed further.'" in a "reasonable to agree that} Williams satisfy 463 U.S. this 880, could the petition manner or deserve This jurists that encouragement Slack v. McDaniel, 529 U.S. 473, Estelle, to 2253 {c) {2}. § different 'adequate (quoting Barefoot v. fails when for that matter, resolved presented u.s.c. 28 right." 893 standard. & 484 n.4 the to {2000) (1983}}. Accordingly, a certificate of appealability will be denied. The Clerk is directed to send a copy of the Memorandum Opinion to Williams. It is so ORDERED. /s/ Robert E. Payne Senior United States District Judge Richmond, Virginia Date: ~~I ~t7 5

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