United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
ORDER ON SECTION 2255 PETITION
MICHAEL J. REAGAN United States District Judge.
June 17 2004, Petitioner Darnell Hall pled guilty to a single
count indictment charging him with being a felon in
possession of a firearm, in violation of 18 U.S.C. §
922(g)(1) (S.D. Ill., CM/ECF, Case No. 03-cr-30133-MJR, Docs.
1, 16). On January 28, 2005, Hall was sentenced to 70 months
of incarceration, to run consecutive to a term of
imprisonment he was already serving under the control of the
State of Missouri (Dkt. entry 26, Doc. 30). Hall did not
pursue a direct appeal, so his conviction became final in
February 2005. Years passed with no legal action until Hall
filed a habeas corpus petition before this Court on January
28, 2014 (Doc. 1).
Court conducted an initial threshold screening of the
petition and directed the Government to respond (Dkt. entry
no. 2). The Government filed a timely response by March 6,
2014, arguing for denial of Hall's petition on procedural
and substantive grounds (Doc. 4). A number of intervening
supplements, replies, and responses, protracted the lifespan
of this § 2255 petition-events which will be explained
in greater detail below. At present, the case is before the
Court for a decision as to whether the petition should
proceed for an evidentiary hearing or other relief, or
whether denial is appropriate. For the reasons stated herein,
the Court finds that it is appropriate to deny the petition.
Hall pled guilty to a grand jury indictment, charging him
with being a felon in possession of a firearm, in violation
of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1) (S.D. Ill., CM/ECF, Case No.
03-30133, Docs. 1, 16). On January 28, 2005, Hall was
sentenced to 70 months of incarceration, to run consecutive
to a Missouri state sentence (Id. at Dkt. entry 26,
Doc. 30). Hall did not appeal his conviction and this is his
first post-conviction proceeding.
present petition, Hall primarily argued that his trial
counsel was ineffective for failing to challenge his
prosecution for want of jurisdiction, that said error
resulted in the district court never having proper
jurisdiction over him, and that his trial counsel was
ineffective for declining to file an appeal despite his
wishes (Doc. 1). Hall's initial petition was filed on
January 28, 2014, and was styled as a habeas corpus petition
under 28 U.S.C. § 2255. (Id.).
Government responded to his initial petition, arguing that it
should be denied on at least two grounds (Doc. 4). First, the
Government sought denial because the Petition was untimely,
as it was filed more than eight years after the one-year
statute of limitations ran for filing a § 2255 petition
(Id. at 4-5). Second, on the merits, the Government
argued that Hall's trial counsel was not ineffective, and
that the trial court's jurisdiction was valid with or
without a writ of habeas corpus ad prosequendum
(Id. at 6-7). The Government attached an application
for writ of habeas corpus ad prosequendum, a writ,
and an order granting that writ, to its response, which
purported to be the writ in the underlying criminal case
(See Doc. 4-1). Thus, the Government argued that
Hall's petition should be time-barred, or denied on the
merits (Id. at 8-9).
December of 2014 and August of 2015, Petitioner Hall twice
moved to supplement his original § 2255 petition,
arguing that his conviction and sentence was constitutionally
infirm based on developments in Supreme Court precedent
concerning armed career criminal sentences (Docs. 9, 10).
Hall argued that his sentence could not stand in light of the
Supreme Court's holding that the residual clause of the
Armed Career Criminal Act (“ACCA”) was
unconstitutionally vague (Doc. 10). Moreover, Hall argued
that the Supreme Court's vagueness decision extended to
provisions of the Sentencing Guidelines, including
§§ 2K2.1 and 4B1.1 (Id.). Thus, Hall
argued that his sentence should be vacated and set aside
Court granted Hall's request to supplement his petition,
which Hall did in September of 2015 (Doc. 15). In the allowed
supplement, Hall reiterated the points he raised in his
motion to supplement, arguing that his conviction and
sentence could not stand in light of recent Supreme Court
Court subsequently appointed counsel to Petitioner Hall
pursuant to the District's Administrative Order 176,
which provided counsel for issues related to Johnson v.
United States, 135 S.Ct. 2551 (2015) (holding that the
residual clause of the ACCA was unconstitutionally vague)
(Dkt. entry 17).
Government responded to Hall's supplement, arguing that
he was still time-barred from filing a § 2255 petition,
or, alternatively, that he did not qualify for relief under
recent Supreme Court precedent (Doc. 19). Specifically, the
Government argued that Petitioner Hall's sentence was not
pronounced under the ACCA, or portions of the Sentencing
Guidelines that were found to be unconstitutional
(Id.). Additionally, the Government argued that Hall
procedurally defaulted his arguments, that he did not claim
actual innocence, and that he could not establish cause and
actual prejudice, among other things (Id.).
December of 2015, counsel appointed for Petitioner Hall filed
a brief on his behalf, indicating that he did not qualify for
any relief under recent Supreme Court precedent (Doc. 22). Of
note, counsel averred that Hall had multiple prior
convictions that could hypothetically qualify him for the
sentence he received and that those particular convictions
were not impacted by the Supreme Court's decisions
because the convictions qualified as sentence enhancement
predicates for reasons other than those found to be
constitutionally infirm (Id.).
with appointed counsel's representations, the Court
discharged counsel in December of 2015, and provided
Petitioner Hall with another opportunity to file a reply to
the Government's latest response on his own behalf (Dkt.
Hall replied by refocusing his efforts primarily on his
original ineffective assistance of counsel and jurisdictional
arguments (Doc. 24). Additionally, he sought different
appointed counsel because the appointed counsel who handled
the Johnson issue was the same as his original trial
counsel (Id.). The Court denied that request,
deferring the appointment of any future ...