The opinion of the court was delivered by: Honorable Edward J. Lodge U. S. District Judge
On April 10, 1997, the Court dismissed several claims in this capital habeas matter as procedurally defaulted. (Docket No. 149.) In that same order, the Court also dismissed some claims as lacking in merit. (Docket No. 149, p. 41.) On May 24, 2007, the Court denied relief on the remaining claims and entered judgment dismissing the cause of action with prejudice. (Docket Nos. 383 & 384.) Currently before the Court are Petitioner's motions to alter, amend, or reconsider those decisions. (Docket Nos. 385 & 387.)
Although a district court has considerable discretion whether to grant a motion to reconsider a final judgment under Rule 59(e) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, the Rule offers an "extraordinary remedy, to be used sparingly in the interests of finality and conservation of judicial resources." Carroll v. Nakatani, 342 F.3d 934, 945 (9th Cir. 2003).
A losing party cannot use a Rule 59(e) motion to relitigate old matters or to raise arguments that could have been raised before the entry of judgment. School Dist. No. 1J, Multnomah County, Or. v. ACandS, Inc., 5 F.3d 1255, 1263 (9th Cir. 1993). Therefore, a motion for reconsideration should be granted only when the initial decision of the court was manifestly unjust or clearly in error, the moving party presents newly discovered or previously unavailable evidence, or there is an intervening change in the controlling law. Turner v. Burlington North. Santa Fe R.R. Co., 338 F.3d 1058, 1063 (9th Cir. 2003) (citation omitted).
II. MOTION TO RECONSIDER THE PROCEDURAL DEFAULT ORDER
Over ten years ago, the Court determined that several of Petitioner's habeas claims had not been fairly presented to the Idaho Supreme Court and were procedurally defaulted under Idaho Code § 19-2719(5). Those claims were dismissed with prejudice. (Docket No. 149, p. 41.)
In his current motion to reconsider that decision, Petitioner argues that Idaho Code § 19-2719(5) violates his right to due process of law, has been inconsistently applied, and is inadequate to prevent federal review on the merits. (Docket No. 390, pp. 1-3.) This is the nearly the same argument that Petitioner made prior to the Court's initial decision (Docket No. 132, pp. 11-12), but to the extent that it may contain new elements, it should have been asserted long before now. Furthermore, the Court has already addressed the merits of Petitioner's argument that Idaho Code § 19-2719 violates his right to due process. (Docket No. 383, pp. 43-45.) Petitioner has not given the Court any persuasive reason to reconsider its decision, and his motion shall be denied.
III. MOTION TO ALTER OR AMEND THE MEMORANDUM DECISION AND JUDGMENT
Petitioner has also moved the Court to alter or amend its memorandum decision on the merits with respect to Claims 2, 9, 21, and 27. This motion shall likewise be denied.
1. The Kevin Buchholz Evidence
In Claim 2, Petitioner alleged that his right to due process of law was violated, in part, because the State failed to disclose exculpatory evidence related to Kevin Buchholz's claim of responsibility for the murder of Stacy Baldwin. The Court denied relief on the following grounds: (1) the State did not suppress or withhold the essential facts surrounding Buchholz's "confession"; (2) Petitioner had not shown how Buchholz's alleged "personality disorder" and criminal history would have been admissible or would have led to admissible evidence; (3) Petitioner had not demonstrated that disclosure of these items would have prompted defense counsel to engage in a ...