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Criminal Law

University of Michigan Law School

Armed Career Criminal Act

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Full-Text Articles in Law

How The Sentencing Commission Does And Does Not Matter In Beckles V. United States, Leah Litman, Luke C. Beasley Oct 2016

How The Sentencing Commission Does And Does Not Matter In Beckles V. United States, Leah Litman, Luke C. Beasley

Articles

Two years ago, in Johnson v. United States, the Supreme Court held that the so-called “residual clause” of the Armed Career Criminal Act (ACCA) is unconstitutionally vague. Last spring, the Court made this rule retroactive in Welch v. United States. Then in June, the Court granted certiorari in Beckles v. United States to resolve two questions that have split lower courts in the wake of Johnson and Welch: (1) whether an identically worded “residual clause” in a U.S. Sentencing Guideline—known as the career offender Guideline—is unconstitutionally void for vagueness; and (2) if so, whether the rule invalidating the Guideline’s residual …


Jurisdiction And Resentencing: How Prosecutorial Waiver Can Offer Remedies Congress Has Denied, Leah Litman, Luke C. Beasley Aug 2016

Jurisdiction And Resentencing: How Prosecutorial Waiver Can Offer Remedies Congress Has Denied, Leah Litman, Luke C. Beasley

Articles

This Essay is about what prosecutors can do to ensure that prisoners with meritorious legal claims have a remedy. The Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act (AEDPA) imposes draconian conditions on when prisoners may file successive petitions for post-conviction review (that is, more than one petition for post-conviction review). AEDPA’s restrictions on post-conviction review are so severe that they routinely prevent prisoners with meritorious claims from vindicating those claims.


Resentencing In The Shadow Of Johnson V. United States, Leah Litman Oct 2015

Resentencing In The Shadow Of Johnson V. United States, Leah Litman

Articles

On June 26, 2015, the Supreme Court handed down a decision many years in the making—Johnson v. United States. Johnson held that the ‘‘residual clause’’ of the Armed Career Criminal Act (ACCA) is unconstitutionally vague. Although Johnson may have been overshadowed in the final days of a monumental Supreme Court term, the decision is a significant one that will have important consequences for the criminal justice system. ACCA’s residual clause imposed a severe 15-year mandatory minimum term of imprisonment, and many federal prisoners qualify for ACCA’s mandatory minimum. Johnson did away with ACCA’s residual clause such that defendants will no …