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Hall v. Warden

United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Alexandria Division

October 5, 2018

ALBERT HALL, Petitioner
v.
WARDEN, Respondent

          DEE D. DRELL JUDGE

          REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION

          Joseph H.L. Perez-Montes United States Magistrate Judge

         Before the Court is a petition for writ of habeas corpus (28 U.S.C. § 2241) filed by pro se Petitioner Albert Hall (“Hall”) (#96599-004). Hall is an inmate in the custody of the Federal Bureau of Prisons, incarcerated at the United States Penitentiary in Pollock, Louisiana. Hall challenges the legality of his sentence imposed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida.

         Because Hall cannot meet the requirements of the savings clause of 28 U.S.C. § 2255(e), his petition should be dismissed for lack of jurisdiction.

         I. Background

         Following a guilty plea, Hall was convicted of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and sentenced to 180 months of imprisonment. (Docket No. 1:11-CR-20217, S.D. Fla., Doc. 42). Hall did not appeal his sentence.

         Hall filed a motion to vacate under 28 U.S.C. § 2255 raising ineffective assistance of counsel claims. (Docket No. 1:12-CV-22634). The motion was denied. (Docket No. 1:12-CV-22634, Doc. 14). Hall's motion for certificate of appealability was also denied. (Docket No. 13-14593, 11th Cir.).

         Hall filed a second motion to vacate, which was dismissed for lack of jurisdiction. (Docket No. 1:14-CV-22452, S.D. Fla., Doc. 21). Hall's appeal was dismissed for want of prosecution. (Docket No. 16-15016, 11th Cir.).

         In 2016, Hall sought authorization from the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit to file a successive motion to vacate. The appellate court denied authorization. (Docket No. 16-16787, 11th Cir.).

         In 2017, Hall again sought authorization from the Eleventh Circuit to file a successive § 2255 petition. Hall argued that his prior Florida drug conviction no longer qualified as a predicate offense for the enhancement to his sentence under the Armed Career Criminal Act. (Docket No. 17-12253, 11th Cir.). Hall's argument relied on Mathis v. United States, 136 S.Ct. 2243 (2016). The appellate court clarified that Hall's reliance on Mathis was misplaced, as Mathis did not announce a new rule of constitutional law. (Docket No. 17-12253, 11th Cir.).

         II. Law and Analysis

         A. Hall does not meet the requirements of the savings clause.

         Hall seeks to proceed under the savings clause of § 2255(e), which provides a limited exception to the rule that a § 2241 petition may not be used to challenge the validity of a federal sentence and conviction. See Pack v. Yusuff, 218 F.3d 448, 452 (5th Cir. 2000). The savings clause allows a prisoner to rely on § 2241 if the remedy available under § 2255 would be “inadequate or ineffective to test the legality of his detention.” 28 U.S.C. § 2255(e). The burden of affirmatively proving that the § 2255 remedy is inadequate rests with the petitioner. See McGhee v. Hanberry, 604 F.2d 9, 10 (5th Cir. 1979).

         The Fifth Circuit has identified the limited circumstances under which the savings clause of § 2255 applies. A petitioner must demonstrate that: (1) his claims are based on a retroactively applicable Supreme Court decision, which establishes that he may have been convicted of a nonexistent offense; and (2) his claims were foreclosed by circuit law at the time when the claims should have been ...


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