Significant Decision Made in the Armed Career Criminal Act
Borden is a United States Supreme Court case involving the classification of prior convictions for “violent felony” in the application of Armed Career Criminal Act (ACCA); the ACCA provides for enhanced sentencing for convicted criminals with three or more such felonies in their history. In a 5–4 decision in June 2021, the Supreme Court ruled that crimes resulting from reckless conduct should not be considered as a “violent felony” for the purposes of the ACCA.
The High Court’s decision made plain a criminal offense with a mens rea of recklessness does not qualify as a “violent felony” under the Armed Career Criminal Act’s elements clause. The decision is certainly good news. Borden follows a string of favorable decision effecting in sentence reduction, something we fully support, handed down in the past several years like Johnson v. United States, ___U.S. ___, 135 S. Ct. 2551, 2563, 192 L.Ed.2d 569 (2015).
The Supreme Court’s decisions in Johnson invalidated the ACCA ‘s residual and Welch v. United States, 578 U.S. ___, 136 S. Ct. 1257 (2016) made Johnson retroactive. In Welch, the Supreme Court held that Johnson announced a new substantive rule that applies retroactively to ACCA § 924(e) residual clause cases on collateral review. Welch, 578 U.S. at ––––, 136 S. Ct. at 1264–65.
Both Johnson and Welch add import to Borden. They establish that anyone who was sentenced to an enhanced sentence, and one of the predicate previous crimes of violence were crimes resulting from reckless conduct, put your 28 USC §2255 paperwork in and give that time back.
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