United States District Court, D. Maryland
RICHARD D. BENNETT UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
pro se Petitioner Janaya Brittne Person-Robinson
('Tetitioner" or "Person-Robinson") pled
guilty before this Court to Armed Bank Robbery, in violation
of 18 U.S.C. § 2113(a), (d), and (f), pursuant to a Plea
Agreement with the Government J., p. 1, ECF No. 54.
Subsequently,, this Court sentenced Petitioner to a period of
incarceration of 84 months, followed by five years of
supervised release. Id. at 2-3. Currently pending
before this Court are Petitioner's Motion to Vacate, Set
Aside, or Correct Sentence, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2255
(ECF No. 57), and Amended Motion to Vacate (ECF No.
Having reviewed the parties' submissions, this Court
finds that no hearing is necessary. See Local Rule
105.6 (D. Md. 2016). For the reasons discussed herein,
Petitioner's Motion to Vacate (ECF No. 57) is DENIED, and
Petitioner's Amended Motion to Vacate (ECF No. 67) is
to a Plea Agreement with the Government, Petitioner Janaya
Brittne Person-Robinson ('Tetitioner" or
"Person-Robinson") has agreed that if this matter
had proceeded to trial, "the Government would have
proven the following facts beyond a reasonable doubt:"
On the morning of October 1, 2013, Person-Robinson and
co-defendant Darrius Roszario D. Washington
("Washington") parked Washington's silver
Chevrolet Impala in a parking lot near an M&T Bank
branch, located at 39 Shipping Place in Dundalk, Maryland.
Plea Agreement, Attachment A, p. 9, ECF No. 34.
Person-Robinson had previously been a
"teller-trainee" at this M&T Bank branch, so
she was "familiar with the bank layout, bank procedures,
and the tellers who worked at the bank." Id.
Person-Robinson had shared her knowledge of this branch with
approximately 7:30 a.m., Person-Robinson and Washington
approached an M&T Bank teller ("Teller 1") as
that teller got out of her car in the branch parking lot.
Id. "Washington [ ] ran up to Teller 1, pulled
out a .32 caliber Iver Johnson Arms and Cycle Works revolver,
held the revolver to Teller l's head, and told her not to
look at him and to unlock the door to the bank."
Id. When Washington threatened to "blow [Teller
l's] head off, " Teller 1 unlocked the door.
Id. Once Person-Robinson and Washington had entered
the bank, Teller 1 fled and called the police. Id.
teller ("Teller 2") was already inside the bank at
that time. Person-Robinson had told Washington Teller 2's
name and the name of Teller 2's child, and had informed
him that Teller 2 had access to the bank's vault.
Id. "Once inside the bank, Washington
immediately approached [Teller 2] and called her by her first
name." Id. Washington forced Teller 2 to
accompany him to the vault, using the revolver, and told her
to open the vault door. Id. "Washington told
[Teller 2] that if she did not open the vault door, she would
never see her son again." Id. Washington stated
the name of Teller 2's son. Id. Teller 2 opened
the vault door, and Washington forced Teller 2 to the floor
with the revolver. Id. Person-Robinson removed money
from the teller stations, and Washington removed money from
the vault. Id.
Person-Robinson and Washington exited the bank. Id.
They "[took] with them a canvas bag filled with $133,
600 of federally insured money, which was in the care and
custody of M&T Bank, got into the Silver Chevrolet
Impala, and attempted to flee." Id. After a
brief pursuit by police, both Person-Robinson and Washington
were arrested. Id. Officers searched the vehicle and
recovered the canvas bag filled with $133, 600, the .32
caliber revolver used to commit the robbery, and hats and
blue latex gloves, which Person-Robinson and Washington had
worn during the robbery. Id. at 9-10.
Person-Robinson and Washington both "provided statements
indicating their involvement in the planning and execution of
the robbery." Id.
and Washington were both charged with Armed Bank Robbery, in
violation of 18 U.S.C. § 2113(a), (d), and (f).
Indictment, ECF No. 1. Additionally, Washington was charged
with Forced Accompaniment, in violation of 18 U.S.C. §
2113(e) (Count 2), and Brandishing a Firearm During a Crime
of Violence, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 924(c) (Count
3). Id. Both Person-Robinson and Washington entered
guilty pleas in this case, pursuant to Plea Agreements with
the Government. Person-Robinson was represented by two
attorneys, one privately-retained and one court-appointed. A
third attorney, from the same law firm as
Person-Robinson's privately-retained counsel, appeared on
her behalf at a proffer session with the Government.
19, 2014, Person-Robinson pled guilty to Armed Bank Robbery
(Count 1), pursuant to a Plea Agreement with the Government.
The Government has indicated that Person-Robinson was brought
in for "outside the case cooperation, " but that
she did not have the kind of information the Government was
looking for. Gov't. Response, Ex. 3, p. 7, ECF No. 63
[SEALED]. Accordingly, the Government did not offer
Petitioner a cooperation agreement and has not at any time
moved for a sentence reduction under U.S.S.G. § 5K1.1.
On October 29, 2014, this Court sentenced Person-Robinson to
a total period of incarceration of 84 months. See
J., p. 1, ECF No. 54. On January 15, 2015, the United
States Sentencing Commission announced a series of proposed
amendments to the Sentencing Guidelines, including Amendment
794, which provides amended guidelines for economic crimes.
However, Amendment 794 did not go into effect until November
1, 2015, over one year after both defendants in this case had
pending Motion to Vacate, Set Aside, or Correct Sentence
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2255 (ECF No. 57),
Person-Robinson seeks a "reduction in sentence and/or a
change in the method of how the balance of her sentence is
served." Mot., p. 1, ECF No. 57. Person-Robinson argues
ineffective assistance of counsel, in violation of her rights
under the Sixth Amendment to the United States Constitution.
Id. at 1-2. Additionally, Person-Robinson claims
that her sentence should be reduced because of
"mitigating circumstances." Id. at 2-4. In
her Amended Motion to Vacate (ECF No. 67), Person-Robinson
argues that the Supreme Court's decision in Johnson
v. United States, 135 S.Ct. 2251 (2015)
"retroactively invalidates" this Court's
determination that Petitioner committed a crime of
violence.Amended Mot., p. 1-2, ECF No. 67.
Person-Robinson further claims in her Amended Motion that she
is entitled to a "minor role reduction" under
Amendment 794, a subsequent amendment to the United States
Sentencing Guidelines. Id. at 2-3.
se filings are "liberally construed" and are
"held to less stringent standards than formal pleadings
drafted by lawyers." Erickson v. Pardus, -551
U.S. 89, 94 (2007) (citation omitted). Under 28 U.S.C. §
2255, a prisoner in custody may seek to vacate, set aside or
correct his sentence where: (1) "the sentence was
imposed in violation of the Constitution or laws of the
United States, " (2) the court lacked "jurisdiction
to impose the sentence, . . . [(3)] the sentence was in
excess of the maximum authorized by law, or [(4) the
sentence] is otherwise subject to a collateral attack."
28 U.S.C. § 2255. "[A]n error of law does not
provide a basis for collateral attack unless the claimed
error constituted 'a fundamental defect which inherently
results in a complete miscarriage of justice.'"
United States v. Addonizio, 442 U.S. 178, 185 (1979)
(quoting Bill v. United States, 368 U.S. 424, 428
Petitioner's Ineffective Assistance ...