United States District Court, M.D. Florida, Tampa Division
D. MERRYDAY UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
the terms of his plea agreement, Williams was convicted of
being a felon in possession of a firearm, for which he is
imprisoned for 180 months. Williams moves under 28 U.S.C.
§ 2255 (Doc. 1) to vacate and challenges the validity of
his sentence. Williams's motion is untimely.
Rules Governing Section 2255 Cases, requires both a
preliminary review of the motion to vacate and a summary
dismissal “[i]f it plainly appears from the face of the
motion, any attached exhibits, and the record of prior
proceedings that the moving party is not entitled to relief .
. . .” Accord Wright v. United States, 624
F.2d 557, 558 (5th Cir. 1980) (finding the summary dismissal of
a Section 2255 motion was proper “[b]ecause in this
case the record, uncontradicted by [defendant], shows that he
is not entitled to relief”); Hart v. United
States, 565 F.2d 360, 361 (5th Cir. 1978) (“Rule
4(b) [Rules Governing § 2255 Proceedings], allows the
district court to summarily dismiss the motion and notify the
movant if ‘it plainly appears from the face of the
motion and any annexed exhibits and the prior proceedings in
the case that the movant is not entitled to relief . . .
.'”). See United States v. Deal, 678 F.2d
1062, 1065 (11th Cir. 1982) (citing Wright and
motion is time-barred. See Day v. McDonough, 547
U.S. 198, 209 (2006) (“[W]e hold that district courts
are permitted . . . to consider, sua sponte, the
timeliness of a state prisoner's habeas
petition.”), and Jackson v. Sec'y, Dep't of
Corr., 292 F.3d 1347, 1349 (11th Cir. 2002) (holding
that the district court possesses discretion to sua
sponte question the timeliness of a petition for the
writ of habeas corpus).
Anti-Terrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act creates a
limitation for a motion to vacate. “A 1-year period of
limitation shall apply to a motion under this section. The
limitation period shall run from the latest of . . . the date
on which the judgment of conviction becomes final . . .
.” 28 U.S.C. § 2255(f)(1). Williams's judgment
was entered on August 27, 2013, and became final fourteen
days later when the time to appeal expired on September 10,
2013. As a consequence, Williams's one-year limitation
deadline was September 10, 2014. Williams's motion to
vacate is dated May 15, 2017, which is more than two years
asserts entitlement to a limitation under Section 2254(f)(3),
which calculates one year from “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 . . . .” Williams contends that Mathis v.
United States, 136 S.Ct. 2243 (2016), affords him a new
limitation under Section 2254(f)(3).
pleaded guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm.
Because he has three prior convictions for the sale of
cocaine and a prior conviction for a crime of violence,
Williams qualifies as an armed career criminal under Section
4B1.4, United States Sentencing Guidelines. Williams scored
an Offense Level 30 (after a three level reduction for
acceptance of responsibility). Williams's rich and varied
prior convictions earned him twenty-one points and a Criminal
History Category VI - only thirteen points are necessary to
qualify for the highest category. Based on this computation,
Williams faced a mandatory minimum sentence of 180 months, an
advisory guideline maximum of 210 months, and a statutory
maximum of life imprisonment. Williams serves the mandatory
minimum sentence of 180 months.
contends that his sentence is unlawful under Mathis,
which governs an offense's qualification as a
“violent felony” under the Armed Career Criminal
Act (“ACCA”). Williams serves a sentence imposed
under the advisory sentencing guidelines. Beckles v.
United States, 137 S.Ct. 886, 895 (2017), explains that
a sentence under “the advisory Sentencing Guidelines
[is] not subject to” the same constitutional challenges
as a sentence under the ACCA. As a consequence,
Mathis is inapplicable.
the terms of the plea agreement, Williams waived the right to
challenge the computation of his sentence. Even if he had not
waived this right and even if Mathis was applicable,
Williams would not gain a new limitation under Section
2254(f)(3) to challenge the computation of his sentence
because “Mathis did not announce a ‘new
rule of constitutional law.'” In re Orestes
Hernandez, __ F.3d __, 2017 WL 2350092 at *2 (May 31,
the motion under Section 2255 to vacate the sentence (Doc. 1)
is DENIED. The clerk must enter a copy of this order in the
criminal action and close this case.
OF BOTH A CERTIFICATE OF APPEALABILITY AND LEAVE TO APPEAL IN
is not entitled to a certificate of appealability
(“COA”). A prisoner moving under Section 2255 has
no absolute entitlement to appeal a district court's
denial of his motion to vacate. 28 U.S.C. § 2253(c)(1).
Rather, a district court must first issue a COA. Section
2253(c)(2) permits issuing a COA “only if the applicant
has made a substantial showing of the denial of a
constitutional right.” To merit a certificate of
appealability, Williams must show that reasonable jurists
would find debatable both (1) the merits of the underlying
claims and (2) the procedural issues he seeks to raise.
See 28 U.S.C. § 2253(c)(2); Slack v.
McDaniel, 529 U.S. 473, 478 (2000); Eagle v.
Linahan, 279 F.3d 926, 935 (11th Cir 2001). Because the
motion to vacate is clearly time-barred, Williams is entitled
to neither a certificate of appealability nor an appeal
in forma pauperis.
a certificate of appealability is DENIED. Leave to appeal
in forma pauperis is DENIED. Williams must obtain
authorization from ...