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Washington v. United States

United States District Court, D. South Carolina, Florence Division

April 23, 2015

Hubert Lee Washington, Jr., Petitioner,
v.
United States of America, Respondent. Civil Action No. 4:14-cv-1654-RBH

ORDER

R. BRYAN HARWELL, District Judge.

Pending before the Court is Hubert Lee Washington, Jr.'s ("Petitioner's") pro se Motion to Vacate, Set Aside, or Correct Sentence ("Motion to Vacate") pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2255, see ECF No. 49. For the following reasons, Petitioner's Motion to Vacate is dismissed.[1]

PROCEDURAL HISTORY AND FACTUAL BACKGROUND

On May 22, 2012, a federal grand jury returned a one count indictment against Petitioner. See Indictment, ECF No. 2. The indictment charged Petitioner with being a felon in possession of a firearm. See id. at 1.

On October 15, 2012, Petitioner pled guilty to County 1 of the indictment without a plea agreement. See Minute Entry, ECF No. 37; Guilty Plea, ECF No. 38. On April 10, 2013, the Court sentenced Petitioner to a term of 180 months. See Minute Entry, ECF No. 43; Judgment, ECF No. 45.

An appeal has not been filed in this matter. However, on April 24, 2014, Petitioner filed the instant Motion to Vacate. See ECF No. 49. On May 19, 2014, the Government filed a motion for summary judgment, asserting that Petitioner's motion to vacate is without merit. See ECF No. 54. An Order filed on May 19, 2014, pursuant to Roseboro v. Garrison, 528 F.2d 309 (4th Cir. 1975), advised Petitioner of the dismissal procedure and the possible consequences if he failed to respond adequately. See Order, ECF No. 55. Petitioner timely filed a response in opposition to Defendant's motion on June 20, 2014. See Pet.'s Resp., ECF No. 57.

Petitioner's Motion to Vacate alleges the following ground for relief, copied verbatim:

Ground 1: Defendant was wrongly enahnced [sic] under the Armed Career Offender guidelines of the 924(e)(1), because he does not have the qualifying predicates. In the present case petitioner does not have the predicate offenses to qualify under the 21 U.S.C. § 924(e)(1). Because his prior convictions were consolidated for one judgment.

ECF No. 49 at 4.

APPLICABLE LAW[2]

Prisoners in federal custody may attack the validity of their sentences pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2255. In order to move the court to vacate, set aside, or correct a sentence under § 2255, a petitioner must prove that one of the following occurred: (1) a sentence was imposed in violation of the Constitution or laws of the United States; (2) the court was without jurisdiction to impose such a sentence; (3) the sentence was in excess of the maximum authorized by law; or (4) the sentence is otherwise subject to collateral attack. 28 U.S.C. § 2255(a).

In deciding a motion to vacate, the court may summarily dismiss the motion "[i]f it plainly appears from the motion, any attached exhibits, and the record of prior proceedings that the moving party is not entitled to relief." Rules Governing Section 2255 Proceedings 4(b); see 28 U.S.C. § 2255(b) (a hearing is not required on a § 2255 motion if the record of the case conclusively shows that petitioner is entitled to no relief). An evidentiary hearing "is required when a movant presents a colorable [] claim showing disputed material facts and a credibility determination is necessary to resolve the issue." United States v. Coon, 205 F.Appx. 972, 973 (4th Cir. 2006) (citing United States v. Witherspoon, 231 F.3d 923, 925-27 (4th Cir. 2000)). However, a hearing is not required unless the claim shows "disputed facts involving inconsistencies beyond the record." United States v. Robinson, 238 F App'x 954, 955 (4th Cir. 2007). Conclusory allegations contained within affidavits do not require a hearing. Strong v. Johnson, 495 F.3d 134, 139-40 (4th Cir. 2007). "Thus, no hearing is required if the petitioner's allegations cannot be accepted as true because they are contradicted by the record, inherently incredible, or conclusions rather than statements of fact.'" Arredondo v. United States, 178 F.3d 778, 782 (6th Cir. 1999) (quoting Engelen v. United States, 68 F.3d 238, 240 (8th Cir. 1995)).

ANALYSIS

I. Parties' ...


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