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USA v. Jerome Kindle, 05-2741.   Kindle appeals the district courts finding that he is a career offender and  that burglary is a crime of violence.   “Career offender” and “Crime of Violence” are findings of law and are reviewed de novo by the 7th Circuit. 

Here, Kindle admits that his burglary is to a residence in his plea agreement.  At sentencing, Kindle tries to change the burglary to a theft apparently realizing that burglary is a crime of violence and that he is now a career offender.  Because of Kindle’s admission in his plea agreement, the admission controls. 

Burglary of a dwelling is specifically named as a crime of violence in USSG 4B1.2.  As such, as a matter of law, the career offender designation is correct.

USA v. Presse Mathews, 05-1665.  Mathews plead guilty to Possession of a Firearm by a Felon.  Mathews is found to be a Armed Career Criminal pursuant to 18 USC 924(e)(1).  This statute requires a 15 year mandatory minimum for a defendant with three prior violent felonies.

The district court uses Mathews’ Illinois conviction for unlawful possession of a knife, 720 ILCS 5/24-1.1, as one of the qualifying violent felonies.  The 7th Circuit finds that this is a violent felony.  Under Illinois law, possession of a knife requires intent to use the knife to be illegal. Given the inherent risk of injury that accompanies the intent to use a knife illegally, the 7th Circuit finds that this is a violent felony.