United States District Court, C.D. Illinois, Peoria Division
ORDER & OPINION
BILLY McDADE United States Senior District Judge
matter is before the Court on Petitioner's Petition for
Writ of Habeas Corpus Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241 (Doc.
1). For the reasons stated below, it is clear that Petitioner
is not entitled to relief under § 2241 and the Petition
must be DENIED.
is currently incarcerated at the Federal Correctional
Institution in Pekin, Illinois. In 2007, Petitioner was
convicted by a Minnesota federal jury of 1) being a felon in
possession of a firearm in violation of 18 U.S.C. §
922(g)(1) and had his sentence enhanced under 18 U.S.C.
§ 924(e)(1). United States v. Van, 543 F.3d
963, 964 (8th Cir. 2008). At his sentencing, Petitioner was
determined to be an armed career criminal with three prior
convictions the court relied upon to impose a § 924(e)
sentencing enhancement. Petitioner objected that the three
felony drug convictions listed in his Presentence
Investigation Report (“PSI”) should be considered
as one offense for purposes of the ACCA. The sentencing court
held that each of the three 2003 drug convictions noted in
the PSI were separate offenses and also that Petitioner had a
fourth qualifying predicate offense, a 1999 simple robbery
conviction noted in paragraph 26 of the PSI. United
States v. Van, No. CIV. 12-2107 MJD, 2013 WL 1703444, at
*1 (D. Minn. Apr. 19, 2013). Petitioner was sentenced to
terms of imprisonment of 213 months and nineteen days.
filed a direct appeal that was denied by the Eighth Circuit
Court of Appeals on October 3, 2008. Van, 543 F.3d
963. In his appeal, he argued that the evidence presented at
his trial was insufficient and that his prior drug
convictions were not separate offenses for purposes of the
ACCA. Id. Petitioner later filed a petition for writ
of habeas corpus under 28 U.S.C. § 2241 in a district
court in Kentucky arguing that there was insufficient
evidence to support his conviction; that the ACCA should not
have been applied; and that his sentence violated the Due
Process Clause. See Van v. Wilson, Civil No.
10-210-GFVT, 2011 WL 2550537, at *1 (E.D. Ky. June 23, 2011).
That court dismissed the § 2241 petition and the ground
that it presented issues that should have been presented in a
§ 2255 motion before the sentencing court.
in 2012, Petitioner filed a § 2255 motion in his
sentencing court arguing that the ACCA was improperly applied
to his sentence because he did not have three qualifying
predicate offenses. Van, 2013 WL 1703444, at *2. The
court found Petitioner's motion to be untimely and
dismissed it on that basis. Id.
Petitioner brings another petition for habeas relief under 28
U.S.C. § 2241. In it he argues, as he has in his
previous attempts at appellate and collateral relief, that he
cannot be classified as an armed career criminal under the
ACCA because he does not have three predicate convictions
needed for the ACCA enhancement pursuant to 18 U.S.C. §
924(e)(1). However, in the instant petition, Petitioner
argues for the first time that his sought-after relief is
compelled by Mathis v. United States, 136 S.Ct. 2243
Court, in its discretion, applies Rule 4 of the Rules
Governing Section 2254 Cases in the United States District
Courts to cases such as these purporting to arise under 28
U.S.C. § 2241. See Rules Governing Section 2254
Cases in the United States District Courts, Rule
1(b). Rule 4 requires the Court to
“promptly examine” the Petition, and dismiss it
if it “plainly appears . . . that the petitioner is not
entitled to relief.” Pursuant to Rule 4 then, the Court
will examine the Petition and determine whether it plainly
appears the Petitioner is entitled to relief.
prisoners like Petitioner who wish to collaterally attack
their convictions or sentences ordinarily must generally do
so under 28 U.S.C. § 2255. Brown v. Rios, 696
F.3d 638, 640 (7th Cir. 2012). They may petition under 28
U.S.C. § 2241 only in the rare circumstance in which the
remedy provided under § 2255 “is inadequate or
ineffective to test the legality of his detention.”
See 28 U.S.C. § 2255(e) (which is often
referred to as “the Savings Clause”). The mere
fact that Petitioner's claim would be a second or
successive § 2255 motion does not render § 2255
inadequate or ineffective. See In re Davenport, 147
F.3d 605, 609-10 (7th Cir. 1998). Moreover, the mere fact
that a movant lost on his § 2255 motion does not render
§ 2255 an inadequate or ineffective remedy to challenge
the legality of his sentence.
a habeas petition under § 2241 is not a substitute for
an appeal of a rejected § 2255 motion or of an
unsuccessful direct appeal. See, e.g.,
McGee v. Cross, No. 14-cv-00149-DRH, 2014 WL 793445
(S.D. Ill. Feb. 26, 2014).
first issue presented by the petition is whether it satisfies
28 U.S.C. § 2244(a). That provision states that
No circuit or district judge shall be required to entertain
an application for a writ of habeas corpus to inquire into
the detention of a person pursuant to a judgment of a court
of the United States if it appears that the legality of such
detention has been determined by a judge or court of the
United States on a ...