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McDermott v. Carlin

United States District Court, D. Idaho

August 16, 2016

JASON RYAN McDERMOTT, Petitioner,
v.
WARDEN TAMIKA CARLIN, Respondent.

          MEMORANDUM DECISION AND ORDER

          Edward J. Lodge United States District Judge.

         Pending before the Court is Petitioner Jason Ryan McDermott’s Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus. (Dkt. 3.) Respondent has filed a Motion for Summary Dismissal, arguing that the Petition is barred by the one-year statute of limitations and that the claims in the Petition are procedurally defaulted or noncognizable. (Dkt. 11.) The Motion is now ripe for adjudication.

         Having carefully reviewed the record, including the state court record, the Court finds that the parties have adequately presented the facts and legal arguments in the briefs and record and that oral argument is unnecessary. See D. Idaho L. Civ. R. 7.1(d).

         Accordingly, the Court enters the following Order granting the Motion and dismissing all the claims in the Petition as untimely.[1]

         BACKGROUND

         The facts underlying Petitioner’s conviction are set forth clearly and accurately in State v. McDermott, Docket No. 32071, Op. 518 (Idaho Ct. App. July 2, 2009) (unpublished), which is contained in the record at State’s Lodging B-4. The facts will not be repeated here except as necessary to explain the Court’s decision.

         Petitioner was convicted by a jury in the Fourth Judicial District in Ada County, Idaho, of first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit first-degree murder, as well as a firearm enhancement. (State’s Lodging B-4 at 1.) After the jury was unable to reach a unanimous verdict with respect to the aggravating factors necessary to render Petitioner eligible to receive the death penalty, the trial court sentenced Petitioner to two concurrent terms of life imprisonment without the possibility of parole for the murder and the conspiracy convictions, as well as an additional sentence of 10 years for the firearm enhancement. (Id. at 3.)

         Petitioner appealed, arguing that his sentences were excessive and constituted an abuse of discretion. (State’s Lodging B-1.) The Idaho Court of Appeals affirmed. State’s Lodging B-4.) The Idaho Supreme Court denied review on August 24, 2009. (State’s Lodging B-7.)

         On March 24, 2010-at the earliest[2]-Petitioner filed a petition for state postconviction relief. (State’s Lodging C-1 at 4-9.) The state district court dismissed the petition. (State’s Lodging C-1 at 394.) The Idaho Court of Appeals affirmed. (State’s Lodging D-14.) The Idaho Supreme Court denied review and issued the remittitur on June 22, 2012. (State’s Lodging D-17.)

         On December 21, 2012, Petitioner filed a successive petition for postconviction relief in the state district court. (State’s Lodging E-1 at 4-71.) The trial court dismissed the successive petition on several different grounds-Petitioner’s claims were determined to be (1) meritless, (2) barred pursuant to Idaho Code § 19-4908, Idaho’s successive petitions bar, (3) barred because they should have been raised on direct appeal, (4) barred on the grounds of res judicata, or (5) barred as untimely. (Id. at 139-52.) The Idaho Court of Appeals affirmed the dismissal of all claims relevant to these proceedings as untimely.[3] (State’s Lodging F-8 at 3-5.) The Idaho Supreme Court denied review on August 12, 2015. (State’s Lodging F-11.)

         Petitioner filed his Petition in this Court, at the earliest, on September 8, 2015. (Dkt. 3 at 19.)

         DISCUSSION

         In the instant federal habeas corpus petition, Petitioner asserts the following claims:

Claim 1: That Petitioner’s Fourth Amendment rights were violated when police officers exceeded the scope of a search warrant.
Claim 2: That Petitioner’s Fifth Amendment right to be free from compelled self-incrimination was violated when (a) detectives “attempted to coerce statements” from Petitioner; (b) the prosecutor “attacked allocution”; and (c) the trial judge “used [the] right not to testify or self-incriminate as means for dealing out such [a] harsh sentence.”
Claim 3: That Petitioner’s rights were violated when (a) the prosecutor threatened several witnesses to discourage them from testifying on Petitioner’s behalf; and (b) Petitioner’s counsel rendered ineffective assistance by failing to present evidence of Petitioner’s traumatic brain injury.
Claim 4: That Petitioner’s rights under the Eighth Amendment were violated when (a) he was not allowed bail; and (b) he was given an illegal sentence.
Claim 5: That Petitioner’s due process rights were violated when (a) the prosecutor “‘leaked’ false and/or misrepresented info to the media”; (b) detectives interfered with Petitioner’s right to legal counsel “once detectives and State became aware of [his] disability”; and (c) the prosecutor failed to disclose exculpatory evidence in violation of Brady v. Maryland, 373 U.S. 83 (1963).[4]
Claim 6: That Petitioner’s due process rights were violated when (a) the prosecutor “colluded with the victim’s mother” and Petitioner’s co-defendant’s mother “in a secret meeting held in the judge’s chambers”; (b) a witnesses committed perjury at Petitioner’s preliminary hearing; (c) the “judge allowed perjury” by Petitioner’s co-defendant; (d) the “court allowed for unlawful use of unsubstantiated prior acts of . . . criminal history”; (e) the “court allowed for the testimony of state’s witnesses, who provided false statements at trial”; (f) the judge gave conflicting, confusing, and misleading jury instructions; (g) the prosecutor “attacked” the testimony of an expert witness “until [the] prosecutor received [the] version he wanted”; (h) Petitioner was not allowed a competency hearing; (i) unsubstantiated information “was used during [the] guilt phase”; and (j) Petitioner was not allowed a change of venue.
Claim 7: That Petitioner’s rights to due process and equal protection were violated when (a) the detectives, prosecutor, and judge “exhibited misconduct and extrajudicial purpose”; (b) the trial judge exhibited “blatant prejudice and bias”; (c) the court allowed a lay witness to express an expert opinion; (d) the court waited to impose a sentence until after the trial of Petitioner’s co-defendant; and (e) the court “abandoned its role as a neutral and detached magistrate by providing a malicious judgment.”
Claim 8: That Petitioner’s rights to due process and equal protection were violated when (a) the prosecutor misled the jury; (b) the prosecutor “unlawfully attacked [Petitioner’s] allocution”; (c) the court imposed an illegal sentence when compared with the sentence of Petitioner’s co-defendant; (d) “no challenge was made to the false statements of multiple witnesses”; (e) Petitioner’s trial counsel did not produce appropriate witnesses; (f) trial counsel did not challenge the “lack of plausible forensic evidence”; (g) trial counsel did not allow Petitioner to view the jury questionnaire; (h) trial counsel failed to challenge “conflicting, misleading, and misrepresented jury instructions”; (i) trial counsel failed to notice a time discrepancy between when Petitioner was arrested and when Petitioner was interviewed”; (j) trial counsel failed to challenge “potential juror taint”; (k) direct appeal counsel failed to appropriately pursue “available avenues of challenge”; and (l) direct appeal counsel failed “to adequately challenge their point of concession” regarding the trial judge’s alleged bias.
Claim 9: That Petitioner’s rights to due process and equal protection were violated because (a) his conviction for conspiracy was based on “unlawful, illegally obtained, and inadmissible evidence”; (b) Petitioner’s trial counsel, the prosecutor, and the trial judge “allow[ed] the grave injustice . . . when the conspiracy conviction was not ...

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