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Stanfield v. Figueroa

United States District Court, E.D. California

April 4, 2014

BOBBY STANFIELD, Petitioner,
v.
FIGUEROA, Respondent.

FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

DALE A. DROZD, Magistrate Judge.

Petitioner, a state prisoner proceeding pro se, has filed a petition for writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254. On December 30, 2013, respondent filed the pending motion to dismiss, arguing that petitioner's habeas petition is time-barred under the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 ("AEDPA"). Petitioner has filed an opposition to the motion. Respondent has not filed a reply.

BACKGROUND

On August 14, 2008, petitioner pleaded no contest to possession for sale of cocaine and admitted two prior felony convictions and two prior prison terms in the Solano County Superior Court. Thereafter, on August 29, 2008, petitioner was sentenced to twelve years in state prison with execution of that sentence suspended, and he was placed on three years formal probation conditioned on his successful completion of the Delancey Street Foundation residential treatment program. Petitioner did not appeal the judgment of conviction. (Resp't's Mot. to Dismiss, Ex. A.)

On March 26, 2010, petitioner admitted to violating probation after he failed to complete the Delancey Street Foundation program. On June 24, 2010, the Solano County Superior Court revoked petitioner's probation and imposed his twelve-year suspended prison sentence. On July 22, 2010, that court awarded petitioner 833 days of presentence time credit. (Resp't's Mot. to Dismiss, Ex. A.)

On August 11, 2010, petitioner appealed from his judgment of conviction. On November 9, 2011, the California Court of Appeal for the First Appellate District remanded the matter to the Solano County Superior Court and directed that court to award petitioner two additional days of presentence time credit and affirmed petitioner's judgment of conviction in all other respects. On December 12, 2011, petitioner filed a petition for review in the California Supreme Court. On January 18, 2012, the California Supreme Court denied review. (Resp't's Mot. to Dismiss, Exs. A & B.)

On March 12, 2012, petitioner filed a petition for writ of habeas corpus in the Solano County Superior Court. On May 2, 2012, that court denied the petition as untimely. On August 14, 2012, petitioner filed a second petition for writ of habeas corpus in the Solano County Superior Court. On October 4, 2012, the court denied that second petition as untimely and repetitious, and because petitioner had failed to present all of his claims in his earlier filed habeas petition. On October 30, 2012, petitioner filed a petition for writ of habeas corpus in the California Court of Appeal for the First Appellate District. On November 8, 2012, the state appellate court denied that petition. Finally, on November 26, 2012, petitioner filed a petition for writ of habeas corpus in the California Supreme Court. On January 30, 2013, that court summarily denied the petition. (Resp't's Mot. to Dismiss, Exs. C-F.)

Under the mailbox rule, [1] on April 23, 2013, petitioner filed his federal petition for writ of habeas corpus in this court. In Claims A-D of the federal petition, petitioner challenges the validity of his no contest plea, the sufficiency of evidence the prosecution relied on in connection with his plea bargain, and complains of misconduct by both the prosecution and his public defender in connection with his no contest plea proceedings. In Claim E of the petition, petitioner challenges his trial counsel's failure to turn over his case file to his appellate counsel after his probation was revoked. (Pet. Attachs. & Exs.)

ANALYSIS

Respondent has moved to dismiss the pending petition as untimely. For the reasons discussed herein, the court finds that petitioner's Claims A-D challenging his no contest plea are untimely and should be dismissed. The court further finds that petitioner's Claim E, challenging his trial counsel's alleged failure to turn over his case file after petitioner's probation was revoked, fails to state a cognizable claim for federal habeas relief and, therefore, even assuming arguendo that this claim was timely filed, it should be dismissed as well.

I. The AEDPA Statute of Limitations

On April 24, 1996, Congress enacted AEDPA which amended 28 U.S.C. § 2244 by adding the following provision:

(d)(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 ...

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