United States District Court, N.D. Ohio, Eastern Division
HONORABLE SARA LIOI UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
the Court is the motion of defendant Carl Washington
(“Washington”) to vacate, set aside, or correct
his sentence pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2255. (Doc. No. 30
[“Mot.”].) Plaintiff United States of America
(the “government”) opposes the motion and has
moved to dismiss Washington's motion as untimely (Doc.
No. 32 [“Opp'n”]), and Washington has filed a
reply in support of his § 2255 motion. (Doc. No. 35
[“Reply”].) For the reasons that follow, the
government's motion to dismiss is
GRANTED and Washington's § 2255
motion is DENIED as time-barred.
24, 2013, Washington was charged by indictment with being a
felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition, in violation
of 18 U.S.C. §§ 922(g)(1) and 924(a)(2). (Doc. No.
1 (Indictment).) On September 23, 2013, pursuant to the terms
of a plea agreement, Washington entered a counseled plea of
guilty before the magistrate judge to the indictment charge.
(Doc. No. 18 (Report and Recommendation
[“R&R”]).) The plea agreement contained an
express provision waiving the right to bring a direct appeal
or to initiate post-conviction proceedings, “including
a proceeding under 28 U.S.C. § 2255.” (Doc. No. 22
(Plea Agreement) at 89.) On October 10, 2013, the Court
adopted the magistrate judge's recommendation that
Washington's guilty plea be accepted (Doc. No. 21 (Order
January 9, 2014, the Court sentenced Washington to a term of
imprisonment of 50 months. (Doc. No. 29 (Judgment).)
Washington did not take a direct appeal from the Court's
judgment, and, instead, on November 29, 2016, Washington
filed the present motion under § 2255. In his motion,
Washington alleges that, “[o]n February 10, 2014, he
was sentenced in the Court of Common Pleas for various
criminal acts.” (Mot. at 153, citing Doc. No. 30-3 (State
Court Notice).) “Instead of being placed in Federal
penal custody by the Federal Authorities[, ]”
Washington alleges that the federal government permitted
“the State of Ohio to take [him] into penal custody to
serve his State sentence first[.]” (Id.)
According to Washington, when this occurred, the federal
government “relinquished it[s] penal jurisdiction
over” him. (Id.)
Standard of Review
federal prisoner may attack the validity of his sentence by
filing a motion to vacate, set aside, or correct the sentence
under 28 U.S.C. § 2255 in the district court where he
was sentenced. Section 2255 sets forth four grounds upon
which a federal prisoner may state a claim for relief:
“ 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  [the sentence] is otherwise subject to
collateral attack[.]” 28 U.S.C. § 2255(a).
criminal defendant may not utilize a § 2255 motion as a
substitute for a direct appeal. Regalado v. United
States, 334 F.3d 520, 528 (6th Cir. 2003); Capaldi
v. Pontesso, 135 F.3d 1122, 1124 (6th Cir. 1998)
(“An application under § 2255 . . . should not be
considered a substitute for direct appeal.”); see
Brecht v. Abrahamson, 507 U.S. 619, 637-38, 113 S.Ct.
1710, 123 L.Ed.2d 353 (1993); Watson v. United
States, 165 F.3d 486, 488 (6th Cir. 1999). To assert a
claim not raised on direct appeal, a petitioner ordinarily
must show cause for the default and prejudice. See
Bousley v. United States, 523 U.S. 614, 622, 118 S.Ct.
1064, 140 L.Ed.2d 828 (1998); United States v.
Frady, 456 U.S. 1584, 1603-04, 102 S.Ct. 1584, 71
L.Ed.2d 816 (1998).
petitioner who entered a guilty plea must show an error of
constitutional magnitude that had a substantial and injurious
effect or influence on the proceedings. Griffin v. United
States, 330 F.3d 733, 736 (6th Cir. 2003) (citing
Abrahamson, 507 U.S. at 637). Therefore, a court may
only grant relief under § 2255 if the petitioner
demonstrates “‘a fundamental defect which
inherently results in a complete miscarriage of
justice.'” Id. at 736 (quoting Davis
v. United States, 417 U.S. 333, 346, 94 S.Ct. 2298, 41
L.Ed.2d 109 (1974)). A petitioner further bears the burden of
articulating sufficient facts to state a viable claim for
relief under § 2255. Vague and conclusory claims which
are not substantiated by allegations of specific facts with
some probability of verity are not enough to warrant relief.
A § 2255 motion may be dismissed if it only makes
conclusory statements without substantiating allegations of
specific facts and fails to state a claim cognizable under
§ 2255. Green v. Wingo, 454 F.2d 52, 53 (6th
Cir. 1972); O'Malley v. United States, 285 F.2d
733, 735 (6th Cir. 1961).
defendant challenges the validity of a plea, the
representations of the defendant, his lawyer, the prosecutor,
and the judge “constitute a formidable barrier in any
subsequent collateral proceedings.” Blackledge v.
Allison, 431 U.S. 63, 74, 97 S.Ct. 1621, 52 L.Ed.2d 136
(1977). Such “[s]olemn declarations in open court carry
a strong presumption of verity.” Id.
Subsequently-presented conclusory allegations that fly in the
face of the record are subject to summary dismissal.
Id. (citations omitted).
should hold an evidentiary hearing “[u]nless the motion
and the files and records of the case conclusively show that
the prisoner is entitled to no relief[.]” 28 U.S.C.
§ 2255(b). 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)); see also
Napier v. United States, No. 93-5412, 1993 WL 406795, at
*2 (6th Cir. Oct. 8, 1993) (“To be entitled to a
hearing, the prisoner must set forth detailed factual
allegations which, if true, would entitle him to relief under
§ 2255.”) (citing, among authorities,
Machibroda v. United States, 368 U.S. 487, 496, 82
S.Ct. 510, 7 L.Ed.2d 473 (1962)); cf. Valentine v. United
States, 488 F.3d 325, 334 (6th Cir. 2007) (finding that
the burden is met where the petitioner “offers more
than a mere assertion . . . he presents a factual narrative
of the events that is neither contradicted by the record nor
‘inherently incredible'”). Where (as here)
the judge considering the § 2255 motion also presided
over the sentencing hearing, the judge may rely on his or her
recollections of those proceedings. See Blanton v. United
States, 94 F.3d 227, 235 (6th Cir. 1996) (citation
Court finds that an evidentiary hearing is not warranted in
the present case. The undisputed facts in the record
demonstrate that Washington's motion-filed more than one
year after his sentence became final-is time-barred under the
governing statute, and Washington has not come forward with
any facts that would demonstrate that he is entitled to
Anti-Terrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act (ADEPA)
“provides a one-year statute of limitations for filing
a federal habeas petition.” Cleveland v.
Bradshaw, 693 F.3d 626, 631 (6th Cir. 2012).
Specifically, a ...