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Lewis v. Schwarzenegger

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT CENTRAL DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA - WESTERN DIVISION


April 9, 2009

SHAWN L. LEWIS, PETITIONER,
v.
ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER, ET. AL., RESPONDENTS.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: George H. WU United States District Judge

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER DISMISSING FIRST AMENDED PETITION FOR WRIT OF HABEAS CORPUS

I. BACKGROUND

On August 27, 2008, petitioner Shawn L. Lewis, a state prisoner proceeding pro se, filed in this Court a document labeled "Habeaus Case 2254 under rule 83-2.11 under rule 8aF.R.c.D" (hereinafter "Petition"). On September 19, 2008, this Court dismissed the Petition with leave to amend for failure to use the form required by the Court. (09/19/08 Order, p. 4.) In response, petitioner filed a document labeled "Habeaus Corpus 28 U.S.C. § 2254 AMENDED," which this Court construed as a First Amended Petition (hereinafter "FAP").*fn1 The Court has screened the First Amended Petition pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2243, Rule 4 of the Rules Governing § 2254 Cases, the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, and the Local Rules of the Central District of California.

The screening of the First Amended Petition reveals that petitioner appears to request that: a) a jury investigate the proper way to address petitioner in habeas corpus petitions; and b) this Court amend state statutes in order to prevent unconstitutional use of state money. (FAP, pp. 1-2.) As discussed below, the Petition is summarily dismissed.

II. DISCUSSION

Under 28 U.S.C. § 2243, it is the duty of this Court to screen out frivolous habeas corpus applications and eliminate the burden that would be placed on the respondent by ordering an unnecessary answer. See Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases, Rule 4, Advisory Committee Notes, 1976 Adoption (citing Allen v. Perini, 424 F.2d 134, 141 (6th Cir. 1970)). A district court must enter an order for the summary dismissal of a habeas petition if it plainly appears from the face of the petition and any exhibits annexed to it that the petitioner is not entitled to relief in the district court. Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases, Rule 4; see also Hendricks v. Vasquez, 908 F.2d 490, 491 (9th Cir. 1990).

A petition lacks an arguable basis in law only if controlling authority requires a finding that the facts alleged fail to establish an arguable legal claim. See Guti v. INS, 908 F.2d 495, 496 (9th Cir. 1990). A court may also dismiss as frivolous petitions reciting bare legal conclusions with no suggestion of supporting facts, or postulating events and circumstances of a wholly fanciful kind. See Franklin v. Murphy, 745 F.2d 1221, 1228 (9th Cir. 1984). Yet, it must be kept in mind that pro se pleadings must be liberally construed. See Haines v. Kerner, 404 U.S. 519, 520, 92 S.Ct. 594, 30 L.Ed.2d 652 (1972).

Here, petitioner makes largely unintelligible requests regarding the proper way to address him in habeas corpus petitions and the appropriate way to use state resources. (FAP, pp. 1-2.) However, in conducting habeas review, a federal court is limited to deciding whether a conviction violated the Constitution, laws, or treaties of the United States. Estelle v. McGuire, 502 U.S. 62, 67-68, 112 S.Ct. 475, 116 L.Ed. 2d 385 (1991) (emphasis added). Accordingly, petitioner's aforementioned requests are summarily dismissed. See Rule 4 of the Rules Governing § 2254 Cases.

ORDER

For all of the foregoing reasons, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED as follows: The instant First Amended Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus is dismissed without prejudice.

Presented by:

DATED: March 5, 2009

JEFFREY W. JOHNSON United States Magistrate Judge


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