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Jackson v. Campbell

United States District Court, D. Maryland

April 30, 2018

WARREN CLIFTON JACKSON, #432-416, Petitioner,
v.
WARDEN Y CAMPBELL and THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF THE STATE OF MARYLAND, Respondents.

          MEMORANDUM OPINION

          Paul W. Grimm United States District Judge.

         Self-represented Petitioner Warren Clifton Jackson filed a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §2254. ECF No. 1. The Petition challenges Jackson's 2013 conviction in the Circuit Court for Baltimore City, Maryland for possession of a regulated firearm after conviction of a disqualifying crime; discharging a gun within Baltimore City limits; and theft of property valued under $1, 000. Id. Respondents filed a Limited Answer in which they sought dismissal of the Petition as being time-barred under 28 U.S.C. § 2244(d)(1)-(2). ECF No. 4. Subsequently, Jackson filed a reply, arguing that this Court is not barred from hearing his claims. ECF No. 7.

         I find no need for an evidentiary hearing. See Rule 8(a), Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases in the United States District Courts and Local Rule 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)). Because his Petition is time-barred, Jackson's Petition is dismissed, and a certificate of appealability shall not issue.

         BACKGROUND

         Respondents accurately described the background of this case:

In October of 2013, Jackson was convicted in the Circuit Court for Baltimore City of unlawful possession of a regulated firearm, unlawful discharging of a firearm, and theft. On December 2, 2013, Jackson was sentenced to serve 15 years in prison. In an unreported opinion filed on February 6, 2015, the Court of Special Appeals of Maryland affirmed Jackson's convictions. Jackson's request for further review in the Court of Appeals of Maryland was denied on May 27, 2015. Jackson did not seek further review in the Supreme Court . . . .
On May 27, 2016, Jackson initiated state post conviction proceedings in the state circuit court. Post conviction relief was denied on October 25, 2016.

Lim. Ans. ¶¶ 4-5 (citations to exhibits omitted); see also Pet. 1-2; State Ct. Docket 7-12, ECF No. 4-1; Jackson v. State, No. 2268, Sept. Term 2013 (Md. Ct. Spec. App. Feb. 6, 2015) (unreported), ECF No. 4-2; Order Denying Cert. (Md. May 27, 2015), ECF No. 4-2. Jackson did not file an application for leave to appeal the denial of post-conviction relief to the Court of Special Appeals of Maryland. See State Ct. Docket.

         In his Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus filed in this Court, Jackson claims "Ineffective Assistance of Postconviction Counsel." Pet. 3. Specifically, he asserts that post-conviction counsel rendered ineffective assistance by "[flailing to call trial counsel at his post-conviction hearing" and by failing to support his claims that trial counsel was ineffective in (a) investigating and preparing his defense, (b) stipulating that Jackson "was prohibited from possessing a firearm, " (c) making a closing argument, (d) failing "to obtain an expert on gunshot residue, " (e) failing to object during the State's closing argument, (f) "[f]ailing to request [a] 'no evidence' jury instruction, (g) failing to object to or highlight inconsistent testimony from State witnesses, and (h) "[f]ailing to advise Jackson to not testify." Id. at 3-4.

         DISCUSSION

         The threshold issue in this case is the timeliness of the Petition, as the Court only may reach the merits of Jackson's claims if the Petition is timely. See 28 U.S.C. § 2244(d)(1). A one-year statute of limitations applies to habeas petitions in non-capital cases for persons convicted in state court. See id.; Wall v. Kholi, 562 U.S. 545, 550 (2011). Section 2244(d)(1) provides that:

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 period shall run from the latest of--
(A) the date on which the judgment became final by the conclusion of direct review or the expiration of the time for seeking such review;
(B) the date on which the impediment to filing an application created by State action in violation of the Constitution or laws of the United States is removed, if the applicant was ...

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