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Lawyer v. Carlin

United States District Court, D. Idaho

April 23, 2014

DANIEL JOEL LAWYER, Petitioner,
v.
TEREMA CARLIN, Respondent.

MEMORANDUM DECISION AND ORDER

CANDY W. DALE, Magistrate Judge.

Pending before the Court is Petitioner Daniel Joel Lawyer's Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus. (Dkt. 3.) Respondent has filed a Motion for Summary Dismissal. (Dkt. 11.) Petitioner has not responded to the Motion. The Court takes judicial notice of the records from Petitioner's state court proceedings, lodged by Respondent on January 16, 2014. (Dkt. 12.) See Fed.R.Evid. 201(b); Dawson v. Mahoney, 451 F.3d 550, 551 (9th Cir. 2006).

The parties have consented to the jurisdiction of a United States Magistrate Judge to conduct all proceedings in this case in accordance with 28 U.S.C. § 636(c). (Dkt. 10.) Having carefully reviewed the record, including the state court record, the Court finds that oral argument is unnecessary. See D. Idaho L. Civ. R. 7.1(d). Accordingly, the Court enters the following Order granting Respondent's Motion and dismissing this case with prejudice.

BACKGROUND

The facts underlying Petitioner's conviction are set forth clearly and accurately in State v. Lawyer, 244 P.3d 1256 (Idaho Ct. App. 2010), which is also contained in the record at State's Lodging B-3. The facts will not be repeated here, except as necessary to determine the procedural issues at hand.

Petitioner was convicted by a jury in the Second Judicial District of the State of Idaho, in Nez Perce County, of one count of driving under the influence (DUI), enhanced to a felony based on a previous DUI conviction. (State's Lodging B-3 at 1-2.) Petitioner was sentenced to a unified sentence of seven years in prison with two years fixed.

On direct appeal, Petitioner argued that there was insufficient evidence to convict him of the felony enhancement and that his sentence was excessive. (State's Lodging B-1.) The Idaho Court of Appeals affirmed Petitioner's conviction and sentence, and the Idaho Supreme Court denied Petitioner's petition for review. (State's Lodging B-3, B-4, B-6, C-1 at 6.)

Petitioner then returned to the trial court and filed a petition for postconviction relief. He argued that his trial counsel rendered ineffective assistance by failing to investigate jurisdictional issues and failing to move for a change of venue, given that (1) the offense was committed on a highway running through the Nez Perce Tribal Reservation and (2) Petitioner is an enrolled member of the Nez Perce Tribe. (State's Lodging C-1 at 6-8.) The state district court dismissed the postconviction petition, concluding that counsel was not ineffective because the State of Idaho had jurisdiction over the crime pursuant to Idaho Code § 67-5101 and Public Law No. 280, § 7, 67 Stat. 588 (1953). (State's Lodging C-1 at 51-52.) Petitioner appealed the dismissal, relying in part on the Nez Perce Treaty of 1855. (State's Lodging D-2 at 2 and Ex. A.) The Idaho Court of Appeals affirmed the dismissal, and the Idaho Supreme Court denied review. (State's Lodging D-5, D-9.)

Petitioner filed the instant Petition in September 2013. The Petition asserts the following claims, all of which are based on the Nez Perce Treaty of 1855. Claim One asserts that Petitioner's rights to due process and equal protection under the Fourteenth Amendment have been violated because, although Petitioner is an enrolled tribal member, a tribal officer was not present during the traffic stop that led to his DUI conviction. Claim Two asserts that Petitioner's conviction violates the Supremacy Clause and the Oath of Office Clause of Article VI of the Constitution. Claim Three asserts again that Petitioner's conviction violates the Supremacy Clause. Claim Four asserts that Petitioner's conviction violates Article 3 of the Treaty of 1855, which concerns public roads on the reservation. (Dkt. 3 at 6-9.)

Respondent now moves for summary dismissal of the Petition, arguing that all of Petitioner's claims are procedurally defaulted.

DISCUSSION

1. Standard of Law Governing Summary Dismissal

Rule 4 of the Rules Governing § 2254 Cases authorizes the Court to summarily dismiss a petition for writ of habeas corpus or claims contained in the petition when "it plainly appears from the face of the petition and any attached exhibits that the petitioner is not entitled to relief in the district court." In such ...


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