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Sandhu v. Fresno County Jail Sheriff Dept.

United States District Court, E.D. California

April 4, 2018

DOREEN VALDEZ SANDHU, Petitioner,
v.
FRESNO COUNTY JAIL SHERIFF DEPT., Respondent.

          ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE WHY THE PETITION SHOULD NOT BE DISMISSED THIRTY (30) DAY DEADLINE CLERK TO SEND BLANK HABEAS CORPUS FORM TO PETITIONER

          MICHAEL J. SENG UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.

         Petitioner is a County jail inmate prisoner proceeding pro se with a petition for writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254. She has been convicted on several occasions in the Fresno County Superior Court.

         I. Procedural Grounds for Summary Dismissal

         Rule 4 of the Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases provides in pertinent part:

If it plainly appears from the petition and any attached exhibits that the petitioner is not entitled to relief in the district court, the judge must dismiss the petition and direct the clerk to notify the petitioner.

         The Advisory Committee Notes to Rule 8 indicate that the court may dismiss a petition for writ of habeas corpus, either on its own motion under Rule 4, pursuant to the respondent's motion to dismiss, or after an answer to the petition has been filed. A petition for habeas corpus should not be dismissed without leave to amend unless it appears that no tenable claim for relief can be pleaded were such leave granted. Jarvis v. Nelson, 440 F.2d 13, 14 (9th Cir. 1971).

         II. Non-Cognizable Claims

         A federal court may only grant a petition for writ of habeas corpus if the petitioner can show that "he is in custody in violation of the Constitution . . . ." 28 U.S.C. § 2254(a). A habeas corpus petition is the correct method for a prisoner to challenge the “legality or duration” of her confinement. Badea v. Cox, 931 F.2d 573, 574 (9th Cir. 1991), quoting, Preiser v. Rodriguez, 411 U.S. 475, 485 (1973); Advisory Committee Notes to Rule 1 of the Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases.

         In contrast, a civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 is the proper method for a prisoner or civil detainee to challenge the conditions of that confinement. McCarthy v. Bronson, 500 U.S. 136, 141-42 (1991); Preiser, 411 U.S. at 499; Badea, 931 F.2d at 574; Advisory Committee Notes to Rule 1 of the Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases.

         For the most part, Petitioner's claims do not implicate the fact or duration of her confinement. Petitioner primarily challenges her medical care in the jail. This presents a challenge to her conditions of confinement, not the fact or duration of her confinement. Claims related to medical care do not fall within the Court's habeas jurisdiction.

         Petitioner does also seeks compassionate release under California law due to her medical issues. However, claims arising only under state law, even if meritorious, would not provide a basis for federal habeas jurisdiction.

         A petition for habeas corpus should not be dismissed without leave to amend unless it appears that no tenable claim for relief can be pleaded were such leave granted. Jarvis v. Nelson, 440 F.2d 13, 14 (9th Cir. 1971). Thus, Plaintiff will be provided the opportunity to file an amended petition.

         III. Exhaustion Requirement

         Petitioner does present one claim that sounds in habeas. Although somewhat unclear, she appears to claim that she was either convicted or sentenced on two separate occasions for the same offense. There is, however, no indication in the petition ...


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