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United States v. Cooley

United States District Court, W.D. Michigan, Southern Division

September 12, 2017

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff,
v.
TRAMAINE BENJAMIN COOLEY, Defendant.

          OPINION

          JANET T. NEFF, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         This matter is before the Court on Defendant Tramaine Benjamin Cooley's motion under 28 U.S.C. § 2255 to vacate, set aside, or correct the sentence imposed upon him (ECF No. 149). In response, the government filed a Motion to Dismiss Defendant's 28 U.S.C. § 2255 motion (ECF No. 151). For the reasons that follow, the Court determines that the government's motion is properly granted and Defendant's § 2255 motion is properly dismissed.

         I. BACKGROUND

         Defendant was charged in a four-count Second Superseding Indictment (ECF No. 60). On August 6, 2010, he pleaded guilty to Counts 2 (Armed Bank Robbery) and 3 (Brandishing a Firearm During a Robbery). This Court sentenced Defendant on December 14, 2010 to 57 months' imprisonment on Count 2 and 84 months' imprisonment on Count 3 (ECF No. 135, Judgment). Defendant did not appeal his convictions or sentences.

         More than six years later, on May 4, 2017, Defendant filed the § 2255 motion at bar (ECF No. 149), asserting that he is “entitled to a resentencing following the Supreme Court's decision in Dean v. United States, 581 U.S. ___ (2017)” (id. at PageID.639). On July 17, 2017, the government filed a motion to dismiss Defendant's § 2255 motion as time-barred (ECF No. 172). Defendant filed a reply to the response (ECF No. 152).

         II. ANALYSIS

         A prisoner who moves to vacate his sentence under 28 U.S.C. § 2255 must show that the sentence was imposed in violation of the Constitution or laws of the United States, that the court was without jurisdiction to impose such sentence, that the sentence was in excess of the maximum authorized by law, or that it is otherwise subject to collateral attack. 28 U.S.C. § 2255(a). To prevail on a § 2255 motion, the movant must demonstrate “the existence of an error of constitutional magnitude which had a substantial and injurious effect or influence on the guilty plea or the jury's verdict.” Humphress v. United States, 398 F.3d 855, 858 (6th Cir. 2005) (quoting Griffin v. United States, 330 F.3d 733, 736 (6th Cir. 2003)).

         A 1-year limitations period applies to § 2255 motions. 28 U.S.C. § 2255(f). Section 2255(f) provides, in pertinent part, that the one-year limitations period shall run from the latest of-

(1) the date on which the judgment of conviction becomes final;
* * *
(3) the date on which the right asserted was initially recognized by the Supreme Court, if that right has been newly recognized by the Supreme Court and made retroactively applicable to cases on collateral review; or
(4) the date on which the facts supporting the claim or claims presented could have been discovered through the exercise of due diligence.

28 U.S.C. § 2255(f).

         Turning first to application of § 2255(f)(1), as a general matter, convictions become “final” upon conclusion of direct review. Sanchez-Castellano v. United States, 358 F.3d 424, 426 (6th Cir. 2004). “[W]hen a federal criminal defendant does not appeal to the court of appeals, the judgment becomes final upon the expiration of the period in which the defendant could have appealed to the court of appeals, even when no notice of appeal was filed.” Id. Here, the Judgment of Sentence was entered on December 14, 2010 and became final fourteen days later, on December 28, 2010. See Fed. R. App. P. 4(b)(1)(a) (providing for a 14-day ...


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