Duhart v. United States

Summarized by:

  • Court: U.S. Supreme Court Certiorari Granted
  • Area(s) of Law: Criminal Law
  • Date Filed: October 7, 2019
  • Case #: 18-9323
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: United States v. Duhart, 752 F. App'x 954 (11th Cir. 2019)
  • Full Text Opinion

Is the residual clause definition of “crime of violence” in 18 U.S.C. §924(c)(3)(B) unconstitutionally vague?

Petitioner pled guilty to conspiracy to commit a Hobbs Act robbery and to possessing a firearm during a “crime of violence,” violating 18 U.S.C. §924(c). Petitioner's conviction was affirmed on appeal. Petitioner later filed an unsuccessful 28 U.S.C. §2255 motion. The Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals allowed petitioner to file a second §2255 motion.  Petitioner relied on Johnson v. United States, 135 S.Ct. 2551 (2015), and argued his conviction could not stand because a new rule of constitutional law was created that was unavailable prior and was made retroactive by the Supreme Court in Welch v. United States, 136 S.Ct. 1257 (2016). The district court agreed with petitioner. The government appealed. The Eleventh Circuit reversed, holding that “Johnson does not support a vagueness-based challenge to the residual clause of section 924(c).” Petitioner argues that the issue here is identically considered by the Supreme Court in United States v. Davis, 139 S. Ct. 2319 (2019). Petitioner argues that the decision in Davis will control the outcome of petitioner’s case. Petitioner argues that if the Court concludes that 18 U.S.C. §924(c)(3)(B) is unconstitutionally vague, the Court should grant, vacate, and remand for relief. The Court granted review and entered a judgment vacating and remanding the case for consideration in light of its ruling in Davis. VACATED and REMANDED.

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