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Williams v. Kallis

United States District Court, C.D. Illinois, Peoria Division

August 19, 2019

LORENZO WILLIAMS, Petitioner,
v.
STEVE KALLIS, Respondent.

          MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

          Michael M. Mihm United States District Judge

         Presently before the Court is Petitioner's Motion for Reconsideration. (D. 11.[1]) For the reasons stated herein, the Motion is DENIED, and the case remains CLOSED.

         PROCEDURAL HISTORY

         On June 24, 2019, this Court entered an Order denying Petitioner Lorenzo Williams' petition for writ of habeas corpus under 28 U.S.C. § 2241 and dismissing his claim, as he failed to satisfy the procedural requirements to consider the merits of his petition. (D. 9.) On July 10, 2019, Williams filed the Motion at hand, arguing a recent ruling by the Seventh Circuit cures the procedural defects in his petition and that the Court should reconsider its decision. (D. 11.) This Order follows.

         LEGAL STANDARD

         A timely motion under Rule 59(e) is effectively a motion for reconsideration. “Motions under Rule 59(e) will only be granted in order to correct manifest errors of law or fact, to present new evidence, or where there has been an intervening and substantial change in the controlling law, and ‘should only be granted in rare circumstances.'” Leslie v. Roberson, No. 15 C 2395, 2017 WL 4158887, at *2 (N.D. Ill. Sept. 19, 2017) (citing Divane v. Krull Elec. Co., Inc., 194 F.3d 845, 848 (7th Cir. 1999)). A party moving for reconsideration under Rule 59(e) bears a heavy burden of establishing the court should reverse its prior judgment. Caisse Nationale de Credit Agricole v. CBI Indus., Inc., 90 F.3d 1264, 1270 (7th Cir. 1996). “A ‘manifest error' is not demonstrated by the disappointment of the losing party. It is the ‘wholesale disregard, misapplication, or failure to recognize controlling precedent.'” Oto v. Metro. Life Ins. Co., 224 F.3d 601, 606 (7th Cir. 2000) (quoting Sedrak v. Callahan, 987 F.Supp. 1063, 1069 (N.D. Ill. 1997)). It is not appropriate to argue matters that could have been raised in prior motions or to rehash previously rejected arguments in a motion to reconsider. Caisse Nationale, 90 F.3d at 1270.

         DISCUSSION

         In his Motion for Reconsideration, Williams argues the Court's decision to deny his § 2241 petition was in error based on the Seventh Circuit's June 24, 2019, ruling in Beason v. Marske, 926 F.3d 932 (7th Cir. 2019). Specifically, Williams asserts (albeit parenthetically) that in Beason, the court held that “substantive decisions such as Mathis presumptively apply retroactively on collateral review under 2241.” (D. 11 at 1.) Williams, however, fails to demonstrate that Mathis v. United States, 136 S.Ct. 2243 (2016), established a new rule which was unavailable to him at the time of his direct appeal and first § 2255 motion. Accordingly, his Motion for Reconsideration is DENIED.

         Williams is no stranger to arguing the sentencing enhancement he received under the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994, commonly known as the “three strikes law” (18 U.S.C. § 3559), was incorrectly applied.

         On November 6, 2001, Williams appealed his conviction to the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals, arguing, in part, that under Apprendi v. New Jersey, 530 U.S. 466 (2000), the government had to include his prior felonies in the indictment and prove to a jury beyond a reasonable doubt that he had prior convictions for serious felonies before the three-strikes enhancement could be applied. United States v. Williams, 308 F.3d 833, 839 (8th Cir. 2002). He also argued that the application of the three-strikes enhancement at sentencing denied him due process by placing the burden on him to prove by clear and convincing evidence that the prior convictions were not serious violent felonies. Id.

         On July 28, 2005, in his first motion to vacate under 28 U.S.C. § 2255, Williams argued his trial counsel demonstrated ineffective assistance by depriving him the ability to argue his prior convictions were not crimes of violence under the three-strikes law by stipulating to the underlying facts of his previous convictions.[2]

         On July 23, 2009, Williams filed a motion to reduce sentence, [3] arguing that under 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(2) and Amendment 709 to the Sentencing Guidelines, he was entitled to a resentencing hearing, as his “prior sentences were for offenses that were not separated by an intervening arrest[, ]” and therefore, should have been considered a single conviction.

         On May 21, 2014, Williams attempted to file his third successive § 2255 motion, [4] arguing in light of Descamps v. United States, 133 S.Ct. 2276 (2013), and using the modified categorical approach, his prior convictions for second-degree robbery did not constitute “serious violent felonies” under the three-strikes law.

         On May 25, 2016, Williams attempted to file his fourth successive § 2255 motion,[5] arguing his sentence was unconstitutional under Johnson v. United States, 135 S.Ct. 2251 (2015), and Welch v. United States, 136 S.Ct. 1257 (2016), because the Supreme Court in Johnson held that the residual clause of the Armed Career Criminal ...


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