United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
CLIFFORD J. PROUD UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
Murray, an inmate in the custody of the BOP, filed a petition
for writ of habeas corpus under 28 U.S.C. §2241. (Doc.
was sentenced as an armed career criminal under 18 U.S.C.
§ 924(e). Citing Mathis v. United States, 136
S.Ct. 2243 (2016), he argues that he is entitled to habeas
relief because his three prior convictions for violation of
Mo. Rev. Stat § 195.211 do not constitute “serious
drug offenses” within the meaning of § 924(e).
Facts and Procedural History
March 2007, Murray pleaded guilty to one count of possession
of a firearm by a convicted felon in the Western District of
Missouri. United States v. Murray, No.
06-cr-00272-NKL. The docket sheet for that case is attached
to Doc. 14 as Exhibit 4. There was no plea agreement. Because he
had at least three prior convictions for serious drug
offenses, he was sentenced as an armed career criminal under
18 U.S.C. § 924(e). He was sentenced to 180 months
presentence investigation report stated that Murray had three
prior convictions for sale of a controlled substance in
violation of Missouri law. Doc. 15 (sealed) at p. 9. At
sentencing, the district judge determined that those three
convictions constituted three separate convictions for
serious drug offenses and therefore he qualified as an armed
career criminal under § 924(e). See, Transcript of
Sentencing Hearing, Doc. 14, Ex. 2.
direct appeal, Murray argued that his three prior convictions
should have been considered as a single prior conviction. The
Eighth Circuit affirmed. Doc. 14, Ex. 6. Murray filed a
motion under 28 U.S.C. § 2255 invoking Johnson v.
United States, 132 S.Ct. 2251 (2015), which was
dismissed in March 2017. Doc, 14, Ex. 8.
Availability of § 2241
prisoner who has been convicted in federal court is generally
limited to challenging his conviction and sentence by
bringing a motion pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2255 in the
court which sentenced him. A motion under § 2255 is
ordinarily the “exclusive means for a federal prisoner
to attack his conviction.” Kramer v. Olson,
347 F.3d 214, 217 (7th Cir. 2003). And, a prisoner is
generally limited to bringing only one motion under
§ 2255. A prisoner may not file a “second or
successive” motion unless a panel of the appropriate
court of appeals certifies that such motion contains either
1) newly discovered evidence “sufficient to establish
by clear and convincing evidence that no reasonable
factfinder would have found the movant guilty of the offense,
” or 2) “a new rule of constitutional law, made
retroactive to cases on collateral review by the Supreme
Court, that was previously unavailable.” 28 U.S.C.
it is possible, under very limited circumstances, for a
prisoner to challenge his federal conviction or sentence
under 28 U.S.C. § 2241. 28 U.S.C. § 2255(e)
contains a “savings clause” which authorizes a
federal prisoner to file a § 2241 petition where the
remedy under § 2255 is “inadequate or ineffective
to test the legality of his detention.” The Seventh
Circuit construed the savings clause in In re
Davenport, 147 F.3d 605, 611 (7th Cir. 1998): “A
procedure for postconviction relief can be fairly termed
inadequate when it is so configured as to deny a convicted
defendant any opportunity for judicial rectification of so
fundamental a defect in his conviction as having been
imprisoned for a nonexistent offense.”
Seventh Circuit has explained that, in order to fit within
the savings clause following Davenport, a petitioner
must meet three conditions. First, he must show that he
relies on a new statutory interpretation case rather than a
constitutional case. Secondly, he must show that he relies on
a decision that he could not have invoked in his first §
2255 motion and that case must apply retroactively.
Lastly, he must demonstrate that there has been a
“fundamental defect” in his conviction or
sentence that is grave enough to be deemed a miscarriage of
justice. Brown v. Caraway, 719 F.3d 583, 586 (7th
Cir. 2013). See also, Brown v. Rios, 696 F.3d 638,
640 (7th Cir. 2012).
Armed Career Criminal Act (“ACCA”)
ACCA, 18 U.S.C. § 924(e), imposes a mandatory minimum
sentence of 15 years on a person who violates 18 U.S.C.
§ 922(g) and who has three prior ...