Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Mouzone v. Bishop

United States District Court, D. Maryland

April 30, 2018

TAVON MARTEZ MOUZONE, Petitioner
v.
WARDEN FRANK BISHOP, JR., et al., Respondents

          MEMORANDUM

          Ellen L. Hollander United States District Judge.

         Tavon Martez Mouzone, who is self-represented, is an inmate confined at the North Branch Correctional Institution in Cumberland, Maryland. He filed a Petition for a Writ of Habeas Corpus (“Petition, ” ECF 1), seeking to attack his 2008 Maryland convictions for first degree felony murder, armed robbery, and related offenses. Id. He was sentenced to life imprisonment, with parole, for murder and he received concurrent sentences for other offenses.

         In their response (ECF 4), respondents argue that the petition is time-barred under the Anti-Terrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 (“AEDPA”). ECF 4. Mouzone argues that his claim is not time barred because he did not learn of habeas corpus until 2016, had never heard of AEDPA, and otherwise did not know about other remedies beyond those available in state court. ECF 6. He also indicates that his attorney did not advise him of AEDPA and other available remedies. Id. at 1-2.

         After reviewing the submissions, I find no need for an evidentiary hearing. See Rule 8(a), Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases in the United States District Courts; see also 28 U.S.C. §22-154(e)(2). For the reasons set forth herein, the Petition is DENIED and DISMISSED.

         I. Procedural History

         In November of 2007, after a jury trial in the Circuit Court for Baltimore County, Mouzone and his co-defendant, Michael Banks, were convicted of first degree felony murder, conspiracy, and related offenses. ECF 4-1; ECF 4-2; ECF 4-3. Mouzone was sentenced on March 6, 2008, to life imprisonment, with parole. Id. He noted a timely appeal and on May 21, 2010, the Maryland Court of Special Appeals of Maryland affirmed Mouzone's conviction. ECF 4-3 at 2-14. The court's Mandate issued on June 21, 2010. Id. at 1. Mouzone's judgment of conviction became final for direct appeal purposes on July 6, 2010. See Md. Rule 8-302 (requiring petition for writ of certiorari to be filed no later than 15 days after the Court of Special Appeals issues its mandate). Mouzone did not file a petition for writ of certiorari to the Maryland Court of Appeals. ECF 4-1 at 3.

         Mouzone filed a counselled motion for modification or reduction of sentence on June 3, 2008, which was denied on July 9, 2008. ECF 4-1 at 5; ECF 4-2 at 14. He filed a pro se motion for modification on August 6, 2010, which was denied on August 23, 2010. ECF 4-1 at 5; ECF 4-2 at 14.

         On November 4, 2011, Mouzone filed an application for post-conviction relief in the circuit court. ECF 4-2 at 14. On October 17, 2014, the circuit court denied Mouzone post-conviction relief. Id. Mouzone's application for leave to appeal the denial of post-conviction relief was denied by the Maryland Court of Special Appeals on November 5, 2015. ECF 4-4 at 1. The court's mandate issued on December 9, 2015. Id. at 3.

         Mouzone filed the instant petition on December 10, 2016.[1] ECF 1. He alleges that his trial counsel was ineffective in: (1) failing to properly litigate the motions to suppress; (2) failing to properly conduct pretrial investigations; (3) allowing Mouzone to become a witness against himself; (4) failing to argue with specificity for a judgment of acquittal; (5) failing to raise the issue of the inconsistency of the verdicts in a motion for new trial; (6) failing to move to set aside the felony murder conviction; and (7) that the cumulative effect of trial counsel's errors deprived him of a fair trial. Id. at 4, 7, 9, 11, 12, 14.

         On January 20, 2017, pursuant to the court's Order, respondents filed a limited answer, arguing that the petition is time-barred and should be dismissed on that basis. ECF 4. The court issued an Order on February 1, 2017, granting Mouzone twenty-eight days from that date to file a response addressing the timeliness issue. ECF 5. Mouzone's response was received on February 14, 2017. ECF 6.

         II. Discussion

         The threshold issue in this case is the timeliness of the Petition. Only if the Petition is timely may the court reach the merits of Mouzone's claims.

         A one-year statute of limitations applies to habeas petitions in cases for persons convicted in state court. See 28 U.S.C. § 2244(d)(1); Wall v. Kholi, 562 U.S. 545, 550 (2011). Section 2244(d)(1) provides:

A 1-year period of limitation shall apply to an application for a writ of habeas corpus by a person in custody pursuant to the judgment of a State court. The limitation ...

Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.