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Adams v. Graham
United States District Court, D. Maryland, Southern Division
August 15, 2017
MICHAEL ADAMS, Petitioner,
RICHARD GRAHAM, et al., Respondents.
J. HAZEL United States District Judge
Adams ("Adams'" or
""Petitioner") who is sell-represented, tiled
this timely petition for writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28
U.S.C. § 2254. attacking his 2009 convictions in the
Circuit Court for Montgomery County. Maryland for
first-degree murder and use of a handgun. ECF No. I.
Respondents, the Warden of Western Correctional Institution
where Petitioner is confined and the Attorney General of the
State of Maryland. filed an Answer. ECF No. 11. to which
Petitioner has replied. ECF No. 14. Having reviewed the
parties" submissions, the court finds no need for an
evidentiary hearing. See Rule 8(a). Rules
Governing Section 2254 Cases in the United States District
Courts and Loc. R. 105.6 (D. Md. 2016); see also
Fisher v. Lee, 215 F.3d 438. 455 (4th Cir. 2000)
(petitioner not entitled to a hearing under 28 U.S.C.
§2254(e)(2)). However, for the following reasons, the
Court shall require supplemental briefing by the Respondents.
BACKGROUND A. Jury Trial
November of2008. Petitioner was tried by a jury sitting in
the Circuit Court for Montgomery County. See ECF No. 11-1 at
32-38. As outlined by the Court of Special Appeals of
Maryland. ECF No. 11-5 at 2-12. the relevant facts were
presented at trial:
[A]t approximately 10:00 p.m.. on February 8, 2008. one man
shot another in or near the 300 block of King Farm Boulevard
in Montgomery County.
Witnesses reported the following sequence of events.
Barry and Barbara Cordon, residents of a townhouse across the
street from [Adams'] home at 232 King Farm Boulevard,
testified that at about 10:00 p.m.. on February 8,
2008. they heard a loud crash outside their house and
"voices that were very loud yelling at each other."
The Gordons heard one person, who sounded like he was
pleading, saying with a tremor in his voice. "You
don't have to do this, man." After hearing those
words, they heard two sounds that sounded like gunshots.
Upon looking out his window. Barry Gordon saw one person
huddled on the ground, with a man in sweat clothes
"hovering over" that person. Then, the man in sweat
clothes turned and walked back down the sidewalk "in a
very casual manner." The man turned, looked back,
hesitated for a moment, and then went into the unit at 232
King Farm Boulevard-Adams's residence-where Mr. Gordon
saw him pacing inside. . . .
Montgomery County Police Officer Antonio Copeland and two
other officers were dispatched to the shooting. When they
arrived at the scene. Copeland observed a man lying on his
side with blood coming out of his mouth. Copeland rolled the
victim over to look for entrance/exit wounds and found an
entrance wound on the man's lower back. What appeared to
be a small caliber bullet fell out from the area of the
entrance wound. Copeland attempted to perform CPR on the
victim but was unsuccessful.
[T]he victim, identified as Jason Hadeed . . . was pronounced
dead at Shady Grove Hospital just after 11:00 p.m. on
February 8. 2008. . . .
Montgomery County Police Department Forensic Specialist Gary
Arter responded to the crime scene later that night to
collect evidence. When he arrived at 232 King Farm Boulevard,
he observed that the front door was locked and showed no
signs of forced entry or kick marks. Upon entering the home,
he saw nothing in disarray ... In the master bedroom. Alter
found a handgun case and live ammunition on the night stand.
Alter collected the projectile of the fired bullet Officer
Copeland had found on Jason's body as well as a live
round of ammunition found on the steps of Adams's
residence.. . . Forensic Specialist Chere Bahna also located
a second live round of ammunition on a carpet runner inside
the home . . .
. .. On the evening of the shooting, Adams's mother. Dody
Pierce, and her live-in "good friend." Edward
Heidecker. were in their Vienna. Virginia home. At
approximately 11:00 p.m.. Heidecker went downstairs to find
Adams and his mother talking in the dining room. Adams told
Pierce and Heidecker that someone named Jason Hadeed had
barged into his condo. used language so vile it could not be
repeated in front of his mother, and hit him. Adams
also said that Jason had attempted to take his laptop
computer and other of his "stuff." Adams was
physically unharmed but was in an apparent state of terror.
lie staled that he had shot Jason, and the gun he had used
was in his car. Between roughly 11:30 and 11:45 p.m..
Heidecker and Pierce called the police to advise that Adams
had been involved in a shooting. When the police arrived,
Adams turned himself in and was taken into custody without
incident. .. .
Steven Hadeed. Jason Hadeed's uncle and friend, stated
that his nephew, a personal trainer who conditioned athletes
for sports, had introduced him to Adams, a former golfer. He
and his nephew had invested in Adams's company, Adams
Edge Consulting, which involved sports handicapping and
gambling. For the first few months, Steven Hadeed received
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