United States District Court, C.D. California
March 24, 2015
MARK CONS, Petitioner,
JANDA, Warden, Respondent.
ORDER ACCEPTING FINDINGS, CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS OF UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
DEAN D. PREGERSON, District Judge.
Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. section 636, the Court has reviewed the Petition, all of the records herein and the attached Report and Recommendation of United States Magistrate Judge. After having made a de novo determination of the portions of the Report and Recommendation to which Objections were directed, the Court concurs with and accepts the findings and conclusions of the Magistrate Judge. However, the Court addresses certain arguments raised in the Objections below.
Defendant contends that the Magistrate Judge's recommendation was based upon Ninth Circuit law rather than Supreme Court precedent and that state courts are only bound by the decisions of the Supreme Court and not by the decisions of federal appeals courts. (Defendant's Objection to Magistrate's Report and Recommendation, "Objections, " at 2). However, the Court finds that the Magistrate Judge's Report and Recommendation applied the law in the decisions of the U.S. Supreme Court in determining that the California courts' rejection of Petitioner's claims was not contrary to or an unreasonable application of clearly established federal law. Although the Report and Recommendation cited LeGrand v. Stewart, 133 F.3d 12532, 1266 (9th Cir. 1988) for its holding that "there is no requirement that a defendant must be allowed to put on any evidence he chooses, '" the Report also referenced Supreme Court decisions evincing the same holding. See eg., Taylor v. Illinois, 484 U.S. 400, 410 (1988) (a criminal defendant "does not have an unfettered right to offer testimony that is incompetent, privileged, otherwise inadmissible under standard rules of evidence.") See Report and Recommendation at 14-15.
Petitioner also objects to the Magistrate Judge's authority to "decid[e] his case by proxy." (Objection at 6). However, 28 U.S.C. § 636 (b)(1)(B) permits a magistrate judge to "submit to a judge of the court proposed findings of fact and recommendations for the disposition, by a judge of the court, ... of applications for posttrial relief made by individuals convicted of criminal offenses." See 28 U.S.C. § 636. Moreover, General Order 05-07 of the United States District Court for the Central District of California expressly provides that state habeas corpus petitions (except for death penalty cases) shall be referred to full-time Magistrate Judges.
The Court has reviewed and considered Defendant's remaining Objections to the Report and Recommendation which are without merit and do not cause the Court to reconsider its decision to accept the Magistrate Judge's conclusions and recommendations.
IT IS ORDERED that Judgment be entered denying and dismissing the Petition with prejudice.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the Clerk serve copies of this Order, the Magistrate Judge's Report and Recommendation and the Judgment herein on counsel for Petitioner and counsel for Respondent.
LET JUDGMENT BE ENTERED ACCORDINGLY.