Lin v. United States

Summarized by:

  • Court: U.S. Supreme Court Certiorari Granted
  • Area(s) of Law: Criminal Law
  • Date Filed: October 7, 2019
  • Case #: 18-9302
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: 752 F. App'x 106

Is the residual clause at 18 U.S.C. § 924(c)(3)(B) void for vagueness? Should this Court hold petitioner’s case for a ruling in United States v. Davis, 903 F.3d 483 (5th Cir. 2018), cert. granted, 139 S. Ct. 782 (2019) (No. 18-431)?

Petitioner was convicted on four counts, including using force in furtherance of a “crime of violence,” a violation of the Armed Career Criminal Act (“ACCA”), 18 U.S.C. § 924(c). Petitioner filed a motion to vacate his § 924(c)(3)(B) conviction, arguing that the definition of “violent felony” in the residual clause of the ACCA was unconstitutional under Johnson v. United States, 135 S. Ct. 2551 (2015). The Second Circuit affirmed his conviction under the “ordinary case” test. The Supreme Court, in Sessions v. Dimaya, 138 S. Ct. 1204 (2018), held that 18 U.S.C. § 16(b)’s identical definition of a “crime of violence” was unconstitutionally vague and held that § 16(b) requires a “categorical approach.” The Second Circuit created a new “conduct-specific approach,” deciding not to apply § 16(b)’s categorical approach to § 924(c)(3)(B) and held that the provision was not unconstitutionally vague. Petitioner asks the Court to resolve the circuit split as to whether § 924(c)(3)(B) is unconstitutionally vague and to vacate his conviction. The Court granted certiorari and issued an order to vacate the judgment and remand for proceedings in light of United States v. Davis, 588 U. S. ___ (2019). VACATED and REMANDED.

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