United States District Court, C.D. California
ORDER SUMMARILY DISMISSING PETITION WITHOUT
ANDERSON UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
about February 28, 2017, petitioner Francisco Erasimo Inojosa
(“petitioner”), a California prisoner proceeding
pro se, filed a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus
(the “petition”) pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §
2254. The petition argues that petitioner's sentence,
imposed pursuant to Cal. Penal Code sections245(a)(2),
12022.5(a)(1), and 186.22(b)(1)(A), is invalid under the
California Supreme Court's holding in People v.
Le, 61 Cal.4th 416 (2015). Specifically, petitioner
asserts that, based on the court's holding in
Le, his sentence violates Cal. Penal Code section
1170.1(f), as well as the Equal Protection and Due Process
Clauses of the Fourteenth Amendment. For the reasons discuss
below, the Court finds that summary dismissal of
petitioner's claims is appropriate.
of the Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases in United States
District Courts (“Rule 4”) allows summary
dismissal of a petition “[i]f it plainly appears from
the petition and any attached exhibits that the petitioner is
not entitled to relief in the district court.” Thus,
Rule 4 confers upon district courts the power to dismiss a
petition “that appears legally insufficient on its
face.” McFarland v. Scott, 512 U.S. 849, 856
(1994). Accordingly, “where the allegations in the
petition are ‘vague [or] conclusory, '”
summary dismissal is permitted. Hendricks v.
Vasquez, 908 F.2d 490, 491 (9th Cir. 1990) (alteration
in original) (quoting Blackledge v. Allison, 431
U.S. 63, 75-76 (1977)).
respect to petitioner's contention that his sentence
violated the rule enunciated in People v. Le, the
Court may not consider that claim because it is not
cognizable on federal habeas corpus. Federal habeas corpus is
reserved for challenges asserting that a petitioner “is
in custody in violation of the Constitution or laws or
treaties of the United States.” 28 U.S.C.
§ 2254 (emphasis added). Accordingly, violations of
state law are not cognizable on federal habeas. Lewis v.
Jeffers, 497 U.S. 764, 780 (1990).
petitioner's claim based on Le is a matter of
state law. In Le, the California Supreme Court
[Cal. Penal Code] section 1170.1, subdivision (f) also
precludes a trial court from imposing both a firearm
enhancement under section 12022.5, former subdivision (a)(1),
and a gang enhancement under section 186.22, subdivision
(b)(1)(B), in connection with a single offense, when the
offense is a “serious felony” under section
186.22, subdivision (b)(1)(B) and involved the use of a
Cal.4th at 419. In deciding that issue, the court's
analysis revolved largely around its prior decision in
People v. Rodriguez, 47 Cal.4th 501 (2009). In
Rodriguez, the California Supreme Court found that
section 1170.1(f) prohibits the imposition of a sentence
pursuant to both sections 12022.5(a)(1) and 186.22(b)(1)(C)
if it was section 12022.5(a)(1) that made the defendant
eligible for sentencing under 186.22(b)(1)(C). 47 Cal.4th at
509-10. That decision was based largely on its discussion of
California's penal schemes and not on any federal
constitutional issues. See generally Id. at 508-10.
In Le, after discussing both Rodriguez and
California's sentencing scheme, the California Supreme
Court held that section 1170.1(f) also prohibits a court from
imposing a sentence pursuant to both sections 12022.5(a)(1)
and 186.22(b)(1)(B). 61 Cal.4th at 429.
clear from both the issue considered by the California
Supreme Court and by the court's analysis that the
holding in Le rests entirely on the interpretation
and application of California law. At most, petitioner's
claim asserts a violation of Cal. Penal Code section
1170.1(f). Therefore, petitioner's claim is one of state
law. Because violations of state law are not cognizable on
federal habeas, petitioner may not raise his present claim in
federal court. At least one district court within this
circuit has also concluded that claims regarding
re-sentencing under Le are not cognizable on federal
habeas. See Becerra v. Cal. Dep't of Corr. &
Rehab., 2016 WL 7324709, at *3 (E.D. Cal. Dec. 16,
Protection and Due Process Claims
petitioner's Equal Protection and Due Process claims,
they are plainly meritless as alleged in the petition. In
order to raise a viable Equal Protection claim, a prisoner
must, at a minimum, assert that he has been disparately
impacted by the challenged action. See United States v.
Estrada-Plata, 57 F.3d 757, 760 (9th Cir. 1995);
Myers v. Ylst,897 F.2d 417, 421 (9th Cir. 1990).
Additionally, a Due Process claim requires a showing that the
petitioner was deprived of some required procedure or that
the state's procedures were constitutionally deficient.
See Swarthout v. Cooke,562 U.S. 216, 222 (2011).
Petitioner has not even attempted to make the required
showing under either standard. Rather, petitioner sets forth
only vague and conclusory allegations that his ...