Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals - Published Opinions

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Ovalles II: Attempted Carjacking is a Crime of Violence Under 924(c)(3)(A)

In Ovalles v. United States, No. 17-1072 (Oct. 9, 2018) (Tjoflat, William Pryor, Hull) (per curiam), the Court held that attempted carjacking is a crime of violence under the elements clause of 924(c)(3)(A).

Although the en banc Court held that Ovalles' attempted carjacking conviction satisfied the residual clause of 924(c)(3)(B) under a fact-based approach, the en banc Court remanded the case back to the panel.  The panel reinstated its original, alternative holding that attempted carjacking satisfies the elements clause under the categorical approach.  The Court reiterated its prior precedents holding that carjacking, including by intimidation, is a crime of violence, and reiterating its prior precedent on the analogous bank robbery statute.  The Court then explained that the attempt element did not result in a different conclusion because, under federal law, the defendant must have the specific intent to commit each element of the substantive offense and must take a substantive step towards committing that offense.  The Court reasoned that when an offense, if completed, satisfies the elements clause, then so does an attempt to commit that same offense.