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Wilson v. Lowry

United States District Court, D. Minnesota

November 7, 2017

Eugene Wilson, Sr., Petitioner,
v.
Kevin Lowry, in his official capacity as Chief U.S. Probation Officer for the District of Minnesota, Respondent.

          ORDER

          SUSAN RICHARD NELSON, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         This matter is before the Court on the parties' joint Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241 petitioning this Court to vacate the sentencing judgment entered by this Court on a recent supervised release violation [Doc. No. 147], to dismiss the corresponding Petition for Revocation of Supervised Release [Doc. No. 134], and to correct Petitioner's original sentence imposed in 1999 to ten years' imprisonment and three years of supervised release [Doc. No. 48].

         I. PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND

         In 1998, Wilson pleaded guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm and, in 1999, was sentenced as an Armed Career Criminal to fifteen years' imprisonment. His ACCA predicate offenses were for terroristic threats in violation of Minnesota law. In addition to a term of incarceration, Wilson was sentenced to a five-year term of supervised release.

         Had Wilson not been sentenced as an Armed Career Criminal, the maximum term of supervised release would have been three years. This is so because 18 U.S.C. § 3583 authorizes supervised release terms of up to five years for those convicted of Class A and Class B felonies. 18 U.S.C. § 3583(b)(1). But for Class C and Class D felonies, the statute authorizes supervised release terms of not more than three years. 18 U.S.C. § 3583(b)(2). An ACCA-enhanced felon-in-possession conviction is a Class A felony, because it is punishable by up to life imprisonment. See 18 U.S.C. § 924(e) (penalty); id. § 3559(a)(1) (sentencing classification of offenses, Class A felonies are punishable by life imprisonment). An unenhanced § 922(g)(1) conviction is a Class C conviction because the maximum term of imprisonment is ten years. See Id. 18 U.S.C. § 924(a)(2); id. 18 U.S.C. § 3559(a)(3) (Class C felonies are punishable by 10-25 years maximum).

         Wilson filed a motion under 28 U.S.C. § 2255 in October 2000. [Doc. No. 58.] It was denied in July 2001. [Doc. No. 66.]

         Wilson finished the carceral portion of his sentence on September 9, 2011 and began serving his initial term of supervised release on that date. As a result, the maximum allowable term of supervised release for a non-ACCA enhanced conviction would have expired on September 8, 2014.

         Wilson's supervised release was revoked on December 10, 2014.[1] [Doc. No. 104.] At that time, he was sentenced to four months' incarceration with three years' supervised release to follow. [Doc. No. 104.]

         Wilson's supervised release term began anew on April 23, 2015, following his release from imprisonment on the first supervised-release revocation. On October 12, 2017, Wilson's supervised release was revoked again. [Doc. No. 147.] He was sentenced to six months' imprisonment with no supervised release to follow. [Id.] Wilson is scheduled to self-surrender on November 10, 2017.

         In November, 2017, Mr. Wilson and the government filed this joint writ of habeas corpus under 28 U.S.C. § 2241, seeking to correct the judgment of conviction to reflect his now undisputed non-ACCA status, which would result in a three-year term of supervised release that would have expired on September 8, 2014. [Doc. No. 148.] Because the revocations of his supervised release and the conduct underlying these violations occurred after this date, he asks the Court to vacate the current sentencing judgment [Doc. No. 147] and to dismiss the corresponding petition for revocation for supervised release.

         For the reasons that follow, the Court grants the joint motion.

         II. ANALYSIS

         A. The Savings Clause Is Satisfied

         1. 28 U.S.C. ยง 2255 generally precludes a federal prisoner from raising challenges to his conviction or sentence by filing a petition for a writ ...


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