US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit Opinions
United States v. Gomez Gomez
Opinion Date: March 1, 2019
Judge: James C. Ho
Areas of Law: Criminal Law
Defendant's prior conviction for aggravated assault constituted a "crime of violence" under 18 U.S.C. 16, and thus an aggravated felony under 8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(43)(F). The Fifth Circuit held that United States v. Reyes-Contreras, 910 F.3d 169 (5th Cir. 2018) (en banc), did not make previously innocent activities criminal. In Reyes-Contreras, the court held that United States v. Castleman, 572 U.S. 157, 162–68 (2014), was not limited to cases of domestic violence, and that for purposes of identifying a conviction as a crime of violence, there was no valid distinction between direct and indirect force. Therefore, this holding foreclosed defendant's use of the distinction between direct and indirect force -- a distinction he hoped would help him establish that aggravated assault under Texas law was not a crime of violence under 18 U.S.C. 16.
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