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HALL v. WATSON (2020)

United States Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit.

Orlando Cordia HALL, Petitioner-Appellant, v. T. J. WATSON, Warden, Respondent-Appellee.

No. 20-3229

Decided: November 19, 2020

Before DIANE S. SYKES, Chief Judge, DAVID F. HAMILTON, Circuit Judge, AMY J. ST. EVE, Circuit Judge Kaitlyn Golden, Attorney, Kathryn Marshall Ali, Attorney, Pieter H.B. Van Tol, III, Attorney, Hogan Lovells US LLP, Washington, DC, Pieter H.B. Van Tol, III, Attorney, Hogan Lovells US LLP, New York, NY, for Petitioner-Appellant Jonathan Glen Bradshaw, Attorney, Brian W. McKay, Attorney, Office of the United States Attorney, Northern District of Texas, Dallas, TX, Bob Wood, Attorney, Office of the United States Attorney, Indianapolis, IN, for Respondent-Appellee Jin Hee Lee, Attorney, NAACP Legal Defense & Education Fund, Washington, DC, Sherrilyn Ann Ifill, Attorney, NAACP Legal Defense & Education Fund, New York, NY, for Amicus Curiae


Orlando Hall's case is again before us, this time on appeal from the district court's order denying his most recent motion for a stay of execution to permit him to pursue a second petition for habeas relief under 28 U.S.C. § 2241. The new § 2241 petition was filed just seven days before his scheduled execution.

We assume familiarity with our order yesterday affirming the district court's dismissal of Hall's first § 2241 petition and denying a stay of execution. Hall v. Watson, No. 20-3216, 829 Fed.Appx. 719 (7th Cir. Nov. 18, 2020). This latest petition is meritless for the reasons explained in Judge Hanlon's comprehensive order dated November 17, 2020. Hall v. Watson, No. 2:20-cv-00599-JPH-DLP, 2020 WL 6785383 (S.D. Ind. Nov. 17, 2020) (Order Denying Motion for Stay of Execution), ECF No. 18.

Briefly, Hall proposes to raise a Batson claim and a claim that the federal death penalty is applied in a racially disproportionate manner. Neither claim is cognizable under § 2241. Under 28 U.S.C. § 2255(e), a § 2241 petition “shall not be entertained” unless the remedy by motion under § 2255 is “inadequate or ineffective to test the legality of” the prisoner's detention. As we have explained many times, the “Savings Clause,” as § 2255(e) is known, is a narrow gateway to the general habeas statute and requires a compelling showing that § 2255 remedy is structurally inadequate or ineffective. Lee v. Watson, 964 F.3d 663, 666 (7th Cir. 2020); Purkey v. United States, 964 F.3d 603, 617 (7th Cir. 2020). Section 2255 is not a structurally inadequate or ineffective vehicle for the claims Hall proposes to raise in his new § 2241 petition. Indeed, he litigated a Batson challenge, lost, and dropped further review of that claim on direct appeal and through multiple rounds of collateral litigation under § 2255. And he long ago raised and lost the systemic-bias claim in his first round of § 2255 litigation in the Northern District of Texas. Finally, neither claim satisfies the Savings Clause under the reasoning of our decision in Webster v. Daniels, 784 F.3d 1123 (7th Cir. 2015) (en banc). Judge Hanlon correctly denied a stay of execution.

The district court's judgment is AFFIRMED. The motion to stay execution, which Hall renewed in this court, is DENIED.

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HALL v. WATSON (2020)

Docket No: No. 20-3229

Decided: November 19, 2020

Court: United States Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit.

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