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United States v. Barnes

United States District Court, E.D. Virginia, Richmond Division

September 28, 2017

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
v.
KEYANA BARNES, Petitioner.

          MEMORANDUM OPINION

          John A. Gibney, Jr. United States District Judge

         Keyana Barnes, a federal inmate proceeding pro se, submitted this motion under 28 U.S.C. § 2255 to vacate, set aside, or correct her sentence ("§ 2255 Motion, " ECF No. 168). The Government requests that the Court deny the § 2255 Motion on the grounds that, inter alia, the statute of limitations bars the § 2255 Motion.[1] (ECF No. 170.) Barnes has responded. (ECF No. 179.) For the reasons set forth below, the § 2255 Motion will be DENIED as barred by the statute of limitations.

         I. PROCEDURAL HISTORY

         On May 4, 2015, Barnes pled guilty to access device fraud (Count Four) and aggravated identity theft (Count Six) as detailed in the Superseding Indictment filed against her. (Plea Agreement ¶ 1, ECF No. 86.) On August 7, 2015, the Court entered judgment and sentenced Barnes to a total of 39 months of imprisonment, consisting of fifteen months on Count Four and twenty-four months on Count Six. (J. 2, ECF No. 140.) Barnes did not appeal.

         On August 23, 2016, Barnes executed and placed her § 2255 Motion in the prison mail system for transmission to this Court. (§ 2255 Mot. 13.)[2] The Court deems the § 2255 Motion filed as of that date. See Houston v. Lack, 487 U.S. 266, 276 (1988).

         In her § 2255 Motion, Barnes argues that she is entitled to relief based on the "Retroactive Minor Role Reduction" pursuant to United States Sentencing Guidelines ("USSG") Amendment 794. (§ 2255 Mot. 4-5.) Specifically, Barnes contends:

Ground One: "The degree to which [Barnes] exercised decision-making authority or influenced the exercise of decision-making authority should be considered due to the nature of [Barnes's] involvement." (Id. at 4.)
Ground Two: "[That Barnes] performed an essential or indispensable role in the criminal activity is not determined and [Barnes] is substantially less culpable than the average participant in the criminal activity." (Id. at 5.)

         II. ANALYSIS

         Section 101 of the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act ("AEDPA") amended 28 U.S.C. § 2255 to establish a one-year period of limitation for the filing of a § 2255 Motion.

         Specifically, 28 U.S.C. § 2255(f) now reads:

(f) A 1-year period of limitation shall apply to a motion under this section. The limitation period shall run from the latest of-
(1) the date on which the judgment of conviction becomes final;
(2) the date on which the impediment to making a motion created by governmental action in violation of the Constitution or laws of the United States is removed, if the movant was prevented from ...

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