United States District Court, E.D. Missouri, Eastern Division
OPINION, MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
EDWARD AUTREY, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
matter is before the Court on the motion of Daren Hill to
vacate, set aside, or correct sentence under 28 U.S.C. §
2255. The motion will be denied and dismissed.
25, 2004, movant pled guilty to Count I of a two-count
Indictment. Count I charged movant with felon in possession
of a firearm, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1). At
sentencing on December 14, 2004, movant was deemed an Armed
Career Criminal pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 924(e)(1)
pursuant to three prior convictions for serious drug
offenses, and he was sentenced to 200 months'
imprisonment, such term to be followed by a five-year term of
supervised release. See United States v. Hill,
4:04CR175 HEA (E.D.Mo.). In addition, the defendant was
ordered to pay a special assessment of $100. Count 2 of the
Indictment, which charged movant with Possession of Cocaine
Base (Crack), was dismissed at the time of sentencing.
appealed his sentence to the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals,
arguing that the Court erred in sentencing him as an Armed
Career Criminal because he did not admit, nor did a jury
determine beyond a reasonable doubt, that his prior
convictions were violent felonies or serious drug offenses.
On January 26, 2006, the Court of Appeals affirmed his
sentence. See United States v. Hill, No. 04-4180
(8th Cir. January 25, 2006).
20, 2016, movant filed the present motion to vacate his
sentence, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2255. In his motion to
vacate, movant asserts that he is entitled to relief under
Johnson v. United States, 135 S.Ct. 2551 (2015).
Background of Movant's State Court Prior Convictions
undisputed that on May 6, 1991, movant was convicted in St.
Clair County, Illinois, for unlawful delivery of a controlled
substance. See State of Illinois v. Hill, Docket No.
91-CF-336. It is also undisputed that on April 12, 1999,
movant was convicted in St. Louis, Missouri, of the sale of a
controlled substance. See State of Missouri v. Hill,
Docket No. 981-2941B. And it is also undisputed that on
August 25, 1995, movant was convicted in St. Louis, Missouri,
of the sale of a controlled substance. See State of
Missouri v. Hill, Docket No. 941-4151A. These drug
convictions qualify as serious drug offenses as defined in 18
U.S.C. § 924(e)(2)(A)(ii), in that the offenses involve
the manufacture, distribution or possession with intent to
manufacture or distribute a controlled substance for which
the maximum term of imprisonment of ten years or more is
prescribed by law.
also undisputed that on July 19, 1985, the defendant was
convicted in St. Clair, Illinois, of attempted armed robbery.
See State of Illinois v. Hill, Docket No. 84-CF-922.
According to the state-court Indictment, while armed with a
gun, movant pointed the gun at a woman, demanded the woman
give movant her purse and attempted to take the purse from
her person by the use of force. This qualifies as a violent
felony under 18 U.S.C. § 924(e) as it has an element,
the use, attempted use or threatened use of physical force
against the person of another.
prisoner may move for post-conviction relief under 28 U.S.C.
§ 2255 for “transgressions of constitutional
rights and for a narrow range of injuries that could not have
been raised on direct appeal, and, if uncorrected, would
result in a complete miscarriage of justice.”
United States v. Apfel, 97 F.3d 1074, 1076 (8th Cir.
1996). Specifically, § 2255 provides:
A prisoner in custody under sentence of a court established
by Act of Congress claiming the right to be released upon the
ground that the sentence was imposed in violation of the
Constitution or laws of the United States, or that the court
was without jurisdiction to impose such sentence, or that the
sentence was in excess of the maximum authorized by law, or
is otherwise subject to collateral attack, may move the court
which imposed the sentence to vacate, set aside or correct
28 U.S.C. § ...