Categorical Approach Update

Posted by on May 5, 2017 in Blog

United States v. Rivera-Muniz, __ F.3d __, 2017 WL 1404193 (9th Cir. Apr. 20, 2017): The Court held that a California manslaughter conviction (Cal. Penal Code §192(a)) is categorically a crime of violence (namely, generic manslaughter) for purposes of U.S.S.G. §2L1.2.

United States v. Barker, __ Fed.Appx. __, 2017 WL 1433330 (9th Cir. Apr. 24, 2017), and United States v. Andrews, __ Fed.Appx. __, 2017 WL 1433316 (9th Cir. Apr. 24, 2017): The Court rejected vagueness challenges to U.S.S.G. §4B1.2’s residual clause in light of Beckles.

United States v. Guillen-Cruz, __ F.3d __, 2017 WL 1314929 (5th Cir. Apr. 10, 2017): The Court held that willfully exporting rifle ammunition magazines without a license (22 U.S.C. §2778(b)(2), (c)) is not an aggravated felony. Although the aggravated-felony definition includes illicit trafficking in firearms or destructive devices, and also includes offenses relating to firearm or ammunition offenses, no definition of firearms or destructive devices in any relevant statute includes rifle magazines, and rifle magazines do not meet the definition of either firearms or ammunition.

United States v. Mulkern, __ F.3d __, 2017 WL 1363791 (1st Cir. Apr. 14, 2017): The Court held that Maine’s robbery statute (7-A Me. Rev. St. Ann. §651(1)(C)), which state courts have interpreted as satisfied if any physical force was used, was not an ACCA violent felony. The Court also held that a Maine conviction for trafficking in two grams or more of heroin was not an ACCA serious drug offense because the statute of conviction (17-A Me. Rev. St. Ann. §1103(1-A)) did not require proof of intent to distribute.

United States v. Sims, __ F.3d __, 2017 WL 1500308 (8th Cir. Apr. 27, 2017): The Court held that a conviction under Arkansas’s residential burglary statute (Ark. Code Ann. §5-39-201(a)(1)) sweeps more broadly than generic burglary and is therefore categorically not an ACCA violent felony.

Castendet-Lewis v. Sessions, __ F.3d __, 2017 WL 1476649 (4th Cir. Apr. 25, 2017): The Court held that a Virginia burglary conviction (Va. Code Ann. §§18.2-90, 18.2-91) is not an aggravated felony.