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Roberto Jose Lebron v. James A. Yates

February 16, 2011

ROBERTO JOSE LEBRON, PETITIONER,
v.
JAMES A. YATES,
RESPONDENT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: M. Snyder United States Magistrate Judge

ORDER GRANTING RESPONDENT'S MOTION TO DISMISS PETITION, DISMISSING PETITION FOR WRIT OF HABEAS CORPUS WITH PREJUDICE, DIRECTING CLERK OF COURT TO ENTER JUDGMENT, AND DECLINING TO ISSUE A CERTIFICATE OF APPEALABILITY/ [Dpc/ 31]

Petitioner is a state prisoner proceeding pro se with a petition for writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254. Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(c)(1), Petitioner consented to the jurisdiction of the United States Magistrate Judge. Local Rule 305(b).

BACKGROUND

On December 1, 2005, Petitioner was convicted of carjacking, unlawfully taking or driving a vehicle, receiving a stolen vehicle and driving a vehicle with a suspended or revoked license. The trial court found true a probation violation in another case. Petitioner was sentenced to a determinate state prison term of nine years.

On June 1, 2007, the California Court of Appeal, Fifth Appellate District, affirmed the judgment. Petitioner then sought review in the California Supreme Court which was granted on August 8, 2007, and then dismissed on September 12, 2007, in light of People v. Black, 41 Cal.4th 799 (2007).

Petitioner did not file any state post-conviction collateral petitions. Petitioner filed the instant petition for writ of habeas corpus on April 20, 2009. On April 21, 2010, the Court issued an order to show cause regarding exhaustion of the state court remedies. Because Petitioner did not file a response, the petition was dismissed on June 3, 2010 and judgment was entered. On June 21, 2010, Petitioner filed a motion for relief from the judgment. On July 2, 2010, the Court granted Petitioner's motion for relief from the judgment, and Petitioner was granted an extension of time to file an amended petition. On August 17, 2010, Petitioner filed a first amended petition. On August 25, 2010, the Court issued another order to show cause regarding exhaustion of the state court remedies. Petitioner submitted a response on September 20, 2010. On November 4, 2010, the Court directed Respondent to file a response. Respondent filed the instant motion to dismiss on December 30, 2010. Petitioner did not file an opposition.

DISCUSSION

A. Procedural Grounds for Motion to Dismiss Rule 4 of the Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases allows a district court to dismiss a petition if it "plainly appears from the petition and any attached exhibits that the petitioner is not entitled to relief in the district court . . . ." Rule 4 of the Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases.

The Ninth Circuit has allowed respondents to file a motion to dismiss in lieu of an answer if the motion attacks the pleadings for failing to exhaust state remedies or being in violation of the state's procedural rules. See e.g., O'Bremski v. Maass, 915 F.2d 418, 420 (9th Cir. 1990) (using Rule 4 to evaluate motion to dismiss petition for failure to exhaust state remedies); White v. Lewis, 874 F.2d 599, 602-03 (9th Cir. 1989) (using Rule 4 as procedural grounds to review motion to dismiss for state procedural default); Hillery v. Pulley, 533 F.Supp. 1189, 1194 & n.12 (E.D. Cal. 1982) (same). Thus, a respondent can file a motion to dismiss after the court orders a response, and the Court should use Rule 4 standards to review the motion. See Hillery, 533 F. Supp. at 1194 & n. 12.

In this case, Respondent's motion to dismiss is based on a violation of 28 U.S.C. 2244(d)(1)'s one-year limitations period. Therefore, the Court will review Respondent's motion to dismiss pursuant to its authority under Rule 4.

B. Limitation Period for Filing a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus On April 24, 1996, Congress enacted the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 (AEDPA). The AEDPA imposes various requirements on all petitions for writ of habeas corpus filed after the date of its enactment. Lindh v. Murphy, 521 U.S. 320, 117 S.Ct. 2059, 2063 (1997); Jeffries v. Wood, 114 F.3d 1484, 1499 (9th Cir. 1997) (en banc), cert. denied, 118 S.Ct. 586 (1997). The instant petition was filed on April 20, 2009, and thus, it is subject to the provisions of the AEDPA.

The AEDPA imposes a one year period of limitation on petitioners seeking to file a federal petition for writ of habeas corpus. 28 U.S.C. § 2244(d)(1). As amended, Section 2244, subdivision (d) reads:

(1) 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 ...


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