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Peterson v. Blades

United States District Court, D. Idaho

January 19, 2017

ROBERT E. PETERSON, Petitioner,
v.
RANDY BLADES, Respondent.

          MEMORANDUM DECISION AND ORDER

          Edward J. Lodge United States District Judge.

         Pending before the Court is Petitioner Robert Ervin Peterson's Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus. (Dkt. 3.) Respondent has filed a Motion for Summary Dismissal, arguing that all of Petitioner's claims are procedurally defaulted and that some are noncognizable. (Dkt. 13.) Petitioner has not responded to the Motion.[1]

         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 Petitioner's claims with prejudice as procedurally defaulted.

         BACKGROUND

         The Court takes judicial notice of the records from Petitioner's state court proceedings, which have been lodged by Respondent. (Dkt. 12.) See Fed. R. Evid. 201(b); Dawson v Mahoney, 451 F.3d 550, 551 (9th Cir. 2006).

         Petitioner pleaded guilty in the Sixth Judicial District Court in Bannock County, Idaho, to four counts of possession of sexually exploitative material. He received an aggregate unified sentence of ten years in prison with sex years fixed. (State's Lodging B-6 at 1.) Petitioner filed a motion for reduction of sentence under Idaho Criminal Rule 35, which the trial court denied. (State's Lodging A-2, A-6 at 10.)

         Petitioner appealed, arguing that the trial court abused its discretion in sentencing Petitioner and in denying the Rule 35 motion. (State's Lodging B-1, B-3.) The Idaho Court of Appeals affirmed, and the Idaho Supreme Court denied review. (State's Lodging B-6, B-9.)

         Petitioner later filed a second Rule 35 motion, arguing that he was not informed of his right, established in Estrada v. State, 149 P.3d 833 (Idaho 2006), to refuse to participate in the court-ordered psychosexual evaluation. (State's Lodging C-1 at 13-16.) Petitioner's motion was granted, and the trial court ordered a new sentencing hearing before a different judge. (Id. at 32-35.)

         Before resentencing, Petitioner moved to disqualify the new judge. This motion was denied. (Id. at 37-40.) Petitioner also moved to withdraw his guilty pleas, asserting that the state violated the plea agreement, that Petitioner's trial counsel rendered ineffective assistance, that the guilty pleas were invalid, and that Petitioner was actually innocent. (Id. at 52-53, 58-66.) This motion was denied after the resentencing hearing, and Petitioner was resentenced to an aggregate unified sentence of twenty years in prison with four years fixed. (Id. at 73-75.) Petitioner filed another Rule 35 motion, which was denied. (Id. at 89.)

         Petitioner appealed, arguing that (1) the trial court should have allowed him to withdraw his guilty pleas because the plea was not knowing, intelligent, and voluntary, (2) the initial sentencing judge should not have elicited the first motion for disqualification from Petitioner, (3) the resentencing judge should have granted Petitioner's second motion to disqualify, and (4) Petitioner's due process rights were violated when resentencing resulted in a higher sentence. (State's Lodging D-1, D-3.)

         The Idaho Court of Appeals held that the initial order vacating Petitioner's original sentence was void because the trial court lacked jurisdiction to enter it. (State's Lodging D-5 at 5.) The court of appeals reinstated Petitioner's original sentence, affirmed the denial of Petitioner's motion to withdraw his guilty plea, and held that all other issues were moot. (Id. at 5-7.) The Idaho Supreme Court denied review. (State's Lodging D-8.)

         Petitioner later filed a petition for state post-conviction relief, raising numerous claims. (State's Lodging E-1 at 10-54.) Following an evidentiary hearing, the trial court dismissed the petition. (Id. at 229-35; State's Lodging E-3.) Petitioner appealed the dismissal, arguing-under Idaho state law-that (1) the trial court was required to make findings of fact and conclusions of law after the evidentiary hearing, and (2) the state's motion for summary dismissal was untimely. (State's Lodging F-2, F-4.)

         The Idaho Court of Appeals affirmed. The court declined to address Petitioner's arguments because Petitioner did not preserve the issues for appeal. (State's Lodging F-5 at 2-3.) The Idaho Supreme Court denied review. (State's Lodging F-8.)

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

Claim 1: The trial court lacked jurisdiction because Petitioner was deprived of his state and federal constitutional rights to a speedy trial.
Claim 2: The trial court lacked jurisdiction because of an “improperly waived preliminary hearing.” Claim 3: The trial court lacked jurisdiction “due to the unconstitutional appointment of Judge McDermott.” Claim 4: The trial court failed to comply with the requirements of Idaho Code § 19-2523.
Claim 5: The prosecutor committed misconduct by breaching the plea agreement.
Claim 6: The prosecutor committed misconduct by failing “to fully disclose [the] nature of [the] charge.” Claim 7: The prosecutor committed misconduct by failing “to disclose fault of law.” Claim 8: The charging statutes were unconstitutional.
Claim 9: Petitioner was denied his Sixth Amendment right to the effective assistance of counsel based on trial counsel's failure “to ...

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