United States District Court, D. Minnesota
Alec Chavis, petitioner pro se.
E. Hudleston, United States Attorney counsel for respondent.
S. Doty, Judge
matter is before the court upon the objection of pro se
petitioner Andrew Alec Chavis to the January 9, 2018, report
and recommendation (R&R) of Magistrate Judge Katherine
Menendez. In her report, the magistrate judge recommended
that the court dismiss the petition for a writ of habeas
corpus without prejudice.
court reviews the R&R de novo. 28 U.S.C. §
636(b)(1)©; D. Minn. LR 72.2(b). After a careful review,
the court finds that the R&R is well reasoned and correct
and overrules the objection.
underlying facts are not in dispute and will not be repeated
except as necessary. A jury in the Northern District of
Illinois found Chavis guilty of (1) conspiracy to possess
cocaine base with intent to distribute and (2) possession of
cocaine base with intent to distribute. United States v.
Chavis, 429 F.3d 662, 664 (7th Cir. 2005). At
sentencing, the court found that Chavis was a career offender
under § 4B1.1 of the sentencing guidelines, and imposed
a sentence of 420 months' imprisonment. Id. at
2005, Chavis appealed his sentence in light of United
States v. Booker, 543 U.S. 220 (2005), which held that
the sentencing guidelines were advisory, not mandatory. The
Seventh Circuit remanded the case to the district court to
determine if it would impose the same sentence in light of
Booker. Chavis, 429 F.3d at 665. The
district court reimposed the 420-month sentence, and the
Seventh Circuit affirmed. United States v. Chavis,
184 F. App'x 574, 574 (7th Cir. 2006).
August 2007, Chavis filed his first motion under 28 U.S.C.
§ 2255, which was dismissed without prejudice. Chavis
filed a second § 2255 motion based on Descamps v.
United States, 570 U.S. 254 (2013), which was dismissed
as untimely. On May 2, 2016, Chavis filed a third § 2255
on the grounds that he was no longer a career offender under
Johnson v. United States, 135 S.Ct. 2551 (2015). On
November 20, 2017, the court denied the motion as untimely.
See United States v. Chavis, No. 16 C 50152, 2017 WL
5569816, at *6 (N.D. Ill. November 20, 2017).
is currently incarcerated in the District of Minnesota. He
petitions the court for a writ of habeas corpus pursuant to
28 U.S.C. § 2241. The magistrate judge recommended that
the court dismiss the petition without prejudice, to which
Chavis now objects.
brings his petition under 28 U.S.C. § 2241, arguing that
he is not a career offender under sentencing guidelines
§ 4B1.1 in light of the Supreme Court's decision in
Mathis v. United States, 136 S.Ct. 2243 (2016).
Generally, challenges to federal convictions must be brought
under 28 U.S.C. § 2255, unless the petitioner shows that
relief under § 2255 is “inadequate or
ineffective.” United States v. Lurie, 207 F.3d
1075, 1077 (8th Cir. 2000). Although the Eighth Circuit has
not established a test to determine when the petitioner has
made such a showing, several circuits require that the
petitioner rely on a new rule of law that applies
retroactively. See Dunklin v. Wilson, No. 13-2411,
2014 WL 5464250, at *4 (D. Minn. Oct. 27, 2017)(collecting
magistrate judge correctly concluded that Chavis failed to
show that relief under § 2255 is inadequate or
ineffective because Mathis did not announce a new
rule of law. R&R at 3-4; see also Blake v. United
States, No. 17-1108, 2017 WL 2655098, at *1 (D. Minn.
June 20, 2017)(citation and internal quotation marks
omitted)(“Mathis, however, does not represent
a change in the law; instead, its decision was dictated by
decades of prior precedent.”). The magistrate judge
also concluded that, even if the court applied Seventh
Circuit precedent as argued by Chavis, his claim would still
fail. Chavis argues that the magistrate judge misapplied
Seventh Circuit precedent. The court disagrees.
Chavis cites to no relevant authority establishing that the
court should apply the precedent of the circuit in which he
was convicted. Second, even if the court applied Seventh
Circuit precedent, it agrees with the magistrate judge that
Chavis cannot bring a Mathis claim under §
2241. In the Seventh Circuit, a petitioner must show that he
relies on a statutory-interpretation case that has been
retroactively applied and that he could not have invoked it
in his first § 2255 motion. Brown v. Caraway,