Friday, July 09, 2004

11th Circuit Limits Blakely's Retroactive Reach

***The 11th Circuit has ruled that Blakely does not apply retroactively in a federal habeas corpus proceeding to cases on collateral review. You can get the ruling here. The case name is In re WILL DEAN and can also be found at 2004 U.S. App. LEXIS 14191.

***Correction: A reader has written in to correct my sloppy post regarding the 11th Circuit ruling. The reader wrote in to say that my post should say that: the court held that Blakely is not a new rule "made retroactive to cases on collateral review by the Supreme Court," for purposes of filing a SECOND OR SUCCESSIVE section 2255 motion.

Thanks for noticing the error. I will do my best to keep any future errors to a minimum.


Comments:
It's not quite accurate to say that the 11th Cir. opinion holds that Blakely "does not apply retroactively . . . to cases on collateral review." Rather, the court holds that Blakely is not a new rule "made retroactive to cases on collateral review by the Supreme Court," for purposes of filing a SECOND OR SUCCESSIVE section 2255 motion.

This is an important distinction. The 11th Cir's decision would not preclude a defendant who has not previously filed a 2255 motion, and whose sentence became final on direct review after Apprendi, from
filing a FIRST section 2255 motion (see Justice O'Connor's footnote to that effect in Blakely). Nor would it necessarily bar a defendant who was sentenced post-Apprendi but filed a prior section 2255 motion from
trying to pursue a section 2241 petition for writ of habeas corpus in the district of his incarceration, under the savings clause.
 
Madeline-

Thanks for correcting my error. I have made a note of it.
 
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