Ernest D. Shields, Petitioner-Appellant,
United States of America, Respondent-Appellee.
February 27, 2018
from the United States District Court for the Northern
District of Illinois, Eastern Division. No. 16 C 10265 -
Rubén Castillo, Chief Judge.
Wood, Chief Judge, and Bauer and Barrett, Circuit Judges.
appeal of a denial of a petition for review under 18 U.S.C.
§ 2255, Ernest Shields argues that he should not have
been sentenced as an armed career criminal because two of his
Illinois convictions-one for residential burglary and another
for armed robbery-cannot be characterized as violent felonies
under the Armed Career Criminal Act, see 18 U.S.C.
§ 924(e). Our recent precedent forecloses the argument
about his residential burglary conviction, and we conclude
that armed robbery in Illinois is a violent felony because it
requires "force or threatened use of force." We
therefore affirm the district court's judgment.
Shields parked his car partially in a crosswalk, in violation
of a Chicago municipal ordinance. Two officers approached
Shields, who was sitting in the driver's seat, and asked
to see his driver's license. When they told Shields to
get out of the car, he bolted. An officer chased him, tackled
him to the ground, and discovered that he was carrying a gun.
Shields was charged as a felon in possession of a firearm,
see 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1). The district court
sentenced him to 15 years' imprisonment as an armed
career criminal based on his prior convictions for aggravated
battery, residential burglary, and armed robbery.
See 18 U.S.C. § 924(e)(1). (Under the Armed
Career Criminal Act, persons convicted of three or more
violent felonies or serious drug offenses must face longer
sentences. Id.) His conviction and sentence were
affirmed on appeal. United States v. Shields, 789
F.3d 733 (7th Cir. 2015).
then moved under 18 U.S.C. § 2255 to vacate his
sentence, arguing, based on the Supreme Court's holding
in Johnson v. United States, 135 S.Ct. 2551 (2015),
that two of his criminal convictions were not violent
felonies under the ACCA. Johnson held that the
definition of "violent felony" in the Act's
"residual" clause was unconstitutionally vague.
After Johnson, a conviction must meet the following
criteria to qualify as a "violent felony" under the
(B) the term "violent felony" means any crime
punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year
(i) has as an element the use, attempted use, or threatened
use of physical force against the person of another; or
(ii) is burglary, arson, or extortion, involves use of
18 U.S.C. § 924(e)(2)(B). Shields argued that the two
convictions in question do not fit into the "violent
felony" definition that Johnson left intact.
district court denied the motion. The judge concluded that
residential burglary was an enumerated offense under the Act
because the crime of burglary in Illinois aligns with the
federal definition of burglary. The judge also determined,
based on our precedent in cases such as United States v.
Dick-erson, 901 F.2d 579, 584 (7th Cir. 1990), that the
terms of the Illinois armed robbery statute-referring to
either "use of force or … threatening the
imminent use of force"-fell within the force
requirements of the ACCA.
case arises from a collateral attack, but the United States
waived all procedural defenses in its brief on appeal.
See Smith v. United States, 877 F.3d 720, 722 (7th
Cir. 2017) (noting that such waivers are conclusive because
relevant procedural defenses are not ...