United States District Court, E.D. Tennessee, Chattanooga
CHRISTOPHER H. STEGER MAGISTRATE JUDGE
R. McDONOUGH UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
the Court is Petitioner Joshua Michael Young's pro
se motion to vacate, set aside, or correct his sentence
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2255 (Doc. 1, in No.
1:19-cv-343; Doc. 26, in No. 1:11-cr-66). Respondent, United
States of America, opposes Petitioner's motion. (Doc. 4,
in No. 1:19-cv-343.) For the following reasons, the Court
will DENY Petitioner's § 2255
November 8, 2011, Petitioner pleaded guilty to possessing a
firearm as a felon, in violation of 18 U.S.C. §
922(g)(1); robbery by means of actual and threatened force,
in violation of the Hobbs Act, 18 U.S.C. § 1951; and
using, carrying, and/or brandishing a firearm in furtherance
of a crime of violence-the Hobbs Act robbery, in violation of
18 U.S.C. § 924(c)(1)(A)(ii). (Docs. 14, 16, in No.
1:11-cr-66.) On February 16, 2012, United States District
Judge Curtis L. Collier sentenced Petitioner to a total of
136 months' imprisonment and five years of supervised
release. (Docs. 21, 22, in No. 1:11-cr-66.) Petitioner did
not appeal. (Doc. 26, at 2, in No. 1:11-cr-66.)
September 13, 2018, Petitioner mistakenly filed, with the
United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, a
motion for leave to file a second or successive motion under
§ 2255. (See Doc. 24, in No. 1:11-cr-66.) On
January 14, 2019, the Sixth Circuit denied Petitioner's
motion as unnecessary, stating, “Young may file his
§ 2255 motion in the district court without our
authorization.” (Doc. 25, at 3, in No. 1:11-cr-66.) On
December 3, 2019, Petitioner filed the instant § 2255
motion, asserting that his conviction under § 924(c) is
unconstitutional in light of Sessions v. Dimaya, 138
S.Ct. 1204 (2018). (See Doc. 1, at 4, in No.
1:19-cv-343.) This motion is now ripe for the Court's
STANDARD OF REVIEW
obtain relief under § 2255, a petitioner must
demonstrate: “(1) an error of constitutional magnitude;
(2) a sentence imposed outside the statutory limits; or (3)
an error of fact or law . . . so fundamental as to render the
entire proceeding invalid.” Short v. United
States, 471 F.3d 686, 691 (6th Cir. 2006) (quoting
Mallett v. United States, 334 F.3d 491, 496-97 (6th
Cir. 2003)). He “must clear a significantly higher
hurdle than would exist on direct appeal” and establish
a “fundamental defect in the proceedings which
necessarily results in a complete miscarriage of justice or
an egregious error violative of due process.” Fair
v. United States, 157 F.3d 427, 430 (6th Cir. 1998).
2255(f) places a one-year period of limitation on all
petitions for collateral relief under § 2255, which runs
from the latest of: (1) the date on which the judgment of
conviction becomes final; (2) the date on which the
impediment to making a motion created by governmental action
in violation of the Constitution or laws of the United States
is removed, if the movant was prevented from making a motion
by such governmental action; (3) the date on which the right
asserted was initially recognized by the Supreme Court, if
that right has been newly recognized by the Supreme Court and
made retroactively applicable to cases on collateral review;
or (4) the date on which the facts supporting the claim or
claims presented could have been discovered through the
exercise of due diligence. 28 U.S.C. § 2255(f).
ruling on a motion made pursuant to § 2255, the Court
must also determine whether an evidentiary hearing is
necessary. “An evidentiary hearing is required unless
the record conclusively shows that the petitioner is entitled
to no relief.” Martin v. United States, 889
F.3d 827, 832 (6th Cir. 2018) (quoting Campbell v. United
States, 686 F.3d 353, 357 (6th Cir. 2012)); see
also 28 U.S.C. § 2255(b). “The burden for
establishing entitlement to an evidentiary hearing is
relatively light, and where there is a factual dispute, the
habeas court must hold an evidentiary hearing to
determine the truth of the petitioner's claims.”
Martin, 889 F.3d at 832 (quoting Turner v.
United States, 183 F.3d 474, 477 (6th Cir. 1999))
(internal quotation marks omitted). While a petitioner's
“mere assertion of innocence” does not entitle
him to an evidentiary hearing, the district court cannot
forego an evidentiary hearing unless “the
petitioner's allegations cannot be accepted as true
because they are contradicted by the record, inherently
incredible, or conclusions rather than statements of
fact.” Id. When petitioner's factual
narrative of the events is not contradicted by the record and
not inherently incredible and the government offers nothing
more than contrary representations, the petitioner is
entitled to an evidentiary hearing. Id.
threshold matter, Petitioner's motion is timely under
§ 2255(f)(3). Petitioner's motion purports to rely
exclusively on Dimaya, which the United States
Supreme Court decided on April 17, 2018. If Petitioner
actually relief solely upon Dimaya, his motion would
be untimely because he filed the instant petition on December
3, 2019 (see Doc. 1, in No. 1:19-CV-343), several
months after the one-year limitation period had lapsed. (Doc.
1.) However, as the Government notes (Doc. 4, at 2, in No.
1:19-cv-343), Petitioner's argument more appropriately
relies upon United States v. Davis, 139 S.Ct. 2319
(2019), which the Supreme Court decided on June 24, 2019. The
Court construes Petitioner's motion liberally, in light
of his pro se status, and deems Petitioner's
motion timely, as less than one year passed between the
Supreme Court's decision in Davis and the filing
of this petition. See 28 U.S.C. § 2255(f)(3).
Davis, the Supreme Court invalidated 18 U.S.C.
§ 924(c)(3)(B), known as the “residual
clause” of this subsection, as unconstitutionally
vague. 139 S.Ct. at 2324, 2336. But, as explained below,
since Petitioner was convicted under § 924(c)(3)(A),
Davis has no effect on his conviction.
924(c) makes it a crime to use, carry, brandish, or discharge
a firearm “during and in relation to any crime of
violence or drug trafficking crime . . . .” 18 U.S.C.
§ 924(c)(1)(A). A ...