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Butler v. United States

United States District Court, W.D. Kentucky, Louisville

July 17, 2017

HANNIBAL BUTLER MOVANT/DEFENDANT
v.
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA RESPONDENT/PLAINTIFF

          MEMORANDUM OPINION

          Thomas B. Russell, Senior Judge United States District Court.

         Movant Hannibal Butler filed a pro se motion to vacate, set aside or correct his sentence pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2255 (DN 68). The Court reviewed the motion under Rule 4 of the Rules Governing Section 2255 Cases in the United States District Courts. Upon review, the Court directed Butler to show cause why his motion should not be dismissed as barred by the applicable statute of limitations. Butler did not file a response to the Show Cause Order. Upon review, for the reasons set forth below, the Court will deny the motion as untimely.

         I.

         After entering a guilty plea, Butler was convicted on April 25, 2006, on one count of possession with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of cocaine and one count of possession with intent to distribute 50 grams or more cocaine base. He was sentenced to 262 months' imprisonment. Butler appealed his conviction to the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, which affirmed on January 22, 2007. He also filed a petition for writ of certiorari in the Supreme Court. The petition was denied on June 29, 2007. He filed the instant § 2255 motion on December 16, 2016.[1]

         II.

         Section 2255 provides for a one-year limitations period, which shall run 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.

§ 2255(f).

         Butler's conviction became final on the date the Supreme Court denied his petition for writ of certiorari, June 29, 2007. Butler, therefore, had until June 29, 2008, to file his § 2255 motion. Accordingly, Butler's motion was filed more than eight years after the statute of limitations expired. Under § 2255(f), therefore, Butler's motion appears to be time-barred and subject to summary dismissal.

         In the motion, Butler challenges his classification as a career offender under the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines based on the recent Supreme Court decision in Mathis v. United States, 136 S.Ct. 2243 (2016). He states, “In light of Mathis, Petitioner convictions for posession of controlled substance and trafficking in a controlled substance, no longer qualifies as predicate offenses for the Career Offender Enhancement.”

         However, the Supreme Court's decision in Mathis did not create a new rule of law which applies retroactively to cases on collateral review. See Tyler v. Cain, 533 U.S. 656, 663 (2001) (“[A] new rule is not made retroactive to cases on collateral review unless the Supreme Court holds it to be retroactive.”). The Supreme Court gave no indication in Mathis that it intended its holding to be applied retroactively to cases on collateral review. See In re Lott, 838 F.3d 522, 523 (5th Cir. 2016) (finding that the inmate “failed to make a prima facie showing that Mathis . . . set forth new rules of constitutional law that have been made retroactive to cases on collateral review); United States v. Taylor, No. 16-6223, 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 21701, at *12 (10th Cir. Dec. 6, 2016) (holding that “Mathis did not announce a new rule”); Box v. United States, No. 16- 546, 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 20373, at *2 (7th Cir. Jul. 20, 2016) (finding that Mathis “does not announce ‘a new rule of constitutional law, made retroactive to cases on collateral review by the Supreme Court[]'”) (quoting § 2255(h)(2)); Atkinson v. United States, No. 1:16-cv-67, 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 51049, at *5-6 (W.D. Mich. Apr. 4, 2017) ...


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