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Griffin v. Goodwin

United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Shreveport Division

February 28, 2017

RAY GRIFFIN D.O.C. #85249
v.
JERRY GOODWIN

          S. MAURICE HICKS, JR., JUDGE

          MEMORANDUM ORDER

          HAYES, MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         Before the court is the application for writ of habeas corpus filed pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254 by petitioner Ray Griffin (“Griffin”). Griffin is an inmate in the custody of Louisiana's Department of Public Safety and Corrections and is incarcerated at David Wade Correctional Center (“DWCC”) in Homer, Louisiana.

         This matter has been referred to the undersigned for review, report, and recommendation in accordance with the provisions of 28 U.S.C. § 636 and the standing orders of the court.

         I. Background

         Griffin pleaded guilty to armed robbery. Doc. 1, p. 1. On July 30, 2001, he was sentenced in the Twenty-Sixth Judicial District Court (“26th JDC”) in Bossier Parish to 40 years imprisonment. Id. He claims that his appeal to the Second Circuit Court of Appeal, wherein he argued excessive sentence, was denied. Id. at 2. Griffin states that the appeal was docketed as 04-KH-39511. Id. He alleges that he did not seek further review by a higher state court. Id. However, the published jurisprudence shows that the Louisiana Supreme Court denied writs on November 29, 2005. See State ex rel. Griffin v. State, 2004-KH-3209, 916 So.2d 155 (La. 2005); Parish of Bossier, 26th JDC Div. D, No. 100, 330; to the Court of Appeal, Second Circuit, No. 39511-KH.

         Griffin states that his next filing was a writ of habeas corpus filed in the Louisiana Supreme Court on June 29, 2016. Doc. 1, p. 3. Therein, he claims that he argued that the state lacked standing and subject matter jurisdiction. Id. Published jurisprudence shows that the Louisiana Supreme Court ruled on Griffin's writ application on November 7, 2016, stating “WRIT NOT CONSIDERED. Petitioner has not demonstrated that he sought review in the court(s) below before filing in this Court nor shown the ‘extraordinary circumstances' that would justify bypassing that level of review. La. S.Ct. Rule X § 5(b).” State ex rel. Griffin v. State, 2016-KH-1230, 2016 WL 6777423 (La. 2016); Parish of Bossier, 26th JDC Div. F, No. 55, 362.

         Griffin signed the instant writ of habeas corpus on October 26, 2016, and same was received and filed with this court on October 28, 2016. Doc. 1, p. 14. Herein, he asserts that the State of Louisiana lacked subject matter jurisdiction and standing, apparently based on his claim of newly discovered evidence. Id. at 5. As relief, he seeks release from custody, and to have his underlying conviction dismissed, quashed, set-aside, and expunged. Id. at 14.

         II. Amend Order

         Before reaching the merits of a habeas claim, a preliminary review of the pleadings and exhibits is conducted in order to determine whether the petitioner has exhausted all available state remedies prior to filing his petition in federal court; whether the petition is time-barred by the provisions of 28 U.S.C. § 2244(d)(1); and, whether any of the claims raised are subject to the procedural default doctrine.

         A. Exhaustion

         An application for a writ of habeas corpus “shall not be granted unless … the applicant has exhausted the remedies available in the courts of the State.” 28 U.S.C. § 2254(b)(1)(A). The exhaustion doctrine requires a petitioner to present all federal claims to the state court before requesting federal habeas relief. Whitehead v. Johnson, 17 F.3d 384, 387 (5th Cir. 1998). State prisoners must afford “the state courts one full opportunity to resolve any constitutional issues by invoking one complete round of the State's established appellate review process.” O'Sullivan v. Boerckel, 526 U.S. 838, 845 (1999). The federal claims should be presented to state courts “in a procedurally proper manner according to the rules of the state courts.” Dupuy v. Butler, 837 F.2d 699, 702 (5th Cir. 1988).

         B. Procedural Default

         The procedural default doctrine bars federal habeas corpus review when a state court declines to address a petitioner's federal claims because the petitioner has failed to follow or has been defaulted by a state ...


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