Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

United States v. Estrada

United States District Court, W.D. Oklahoma

March 7, 2018

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff-Respondent,
v.
ARTHUR WILLARD ESTRADA, Defendant-Movant.

          ORDER

          VICKI MILES-LaGRANGE, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

         Defendant-Movant Arthur Willard Estrada (“Estrada”), a federal prisoner, filed a Motion under 28 U.S.C. § 2255 to Vacate, Set Aside, or Correct Sentence by a Person in Federal Custody. Plaintiff-Respondent United States of America has filed its response.

         I. Introduction

         On November 3, 1999, Estrada and three others were indicted on various drug offenses. Estrada's co-defendants entered guilty pleas, but Estrada elected to go to trial. The jury found defendant guilty on two counts - a misdemeanor for possession of a controlled substance and a felony for being a felon in possession of a firearm, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1). The Presentence Investigation Report stated that Estrada qualified as an armed career criminal under the Armed Career Criminal Act (“ACCA”), 18 U.S.C. § 924(e)(1), based on Estrada's prior convictions. The Court found that Estrada was an armed career criminal and sentenced him to 235 months of imprisonment. The judgment was affirmed on appeal. See United States v. Estrada, 25 Fed.Appx. 814 (10th Cir. Jan. 25, 2002).

         II. Discussion

         In his § 2255 motion, Estrada asserts that in light of the United States Supreme Court's decision in Johnson v. United States, 135 S.Ct. 2551 (2015), he is no longer an armed career criminal because two of his ACCA predicate convictions, convictions for robbery in the state of California, no longer qualify as ACCA violent felonies in light of a 2015 Ninth Circuit opinion, and that his sentence, therefore, should be vacated. In Johnson, the United States Supreme Court held “that imposing an increased sentence under the residual clause of the Armed Career Criminal Act violates the Constitution's guarantee of due process.” Johnson, 135 S.Ct. at 2563. However, the Supreme Court held that “[t]oday's decision does not call into question application of the Act to the four enumerated offenses, or the remainder of the Act's definition of a violent felony.” Id.

         In its response, the government asserts that Johnson affords relief only if the defendant can establish he was sentenced under the now-invalid residual clause. The government further asserts that Estrada has not shown that at the time of his sentence, the robbery convictions at issue qualified as an ACCA predicate only under the residual clause and, therefore, has not met his burden of proving a Johnson error. Finally, the government asserts that since Estrada has failed to show that he was sentenced under the residual clause, his § 2255 motion should be denied.

         The Tenth Circuit has held that a § 2255 movant asserting a Johnson claim has the burden to establish that his ACCA sentence enhancement was based upon a conviction that fell under the residual clause. See United States v. Snyder, 871 F.3d 1122 (10th Cir. 2017).[1] Having reviewed the parties' submissions, as well as the court file in this matter, the Court finds that Estrada has not met his burden of establishing he was sentenced under the now-invalid residual clause. At Estrada's sentencing, the sentencing judge did not make any findings specifying on which clause of the ACCA's violent felony definition the Court was relying. However, even when the sentencing record is unclear, it may be possible to determine that a sentencing court did not rely on the residual clause by looking to the relevant background legal environment at the time of the sentencing. See Snyder, 871 F.3d at 1129. At the time of Estrada's sentencing, the Tenth Circuit generally held that robbery convictions qualified as violent felonies under the elements clause of the ACCA. See e.g., United States v. Lujan, 9 F.3d 890, 892 (10th Cir. 1993). The Court, therefore, finds that Estrada's Johnson claim fails.[2]

         III. Evidentiary Hearing

         As set forth above, Estrada's motion does not set forth a basis for relief from his conviction or sentence. Because that determination is conclusively shown from the motion, files, and record, the Court finds there is no need for an evidentiary hearing on this motion. See 28 U.S.C. § 2255; United States v. Kennedy, 225 F.3d 1187, 1193 (10th Cir. 2000).

         IV. Conclusion

         Accordingly, for the reasons set forth above, the Court DENIES Estrada's Motion under 28 U.S.C. § 2255 to Vacate, Set Aside, or Correct Sentence by a Person in Federal Custody.

         IT IS ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.