Branch v. VA Dept Corrections

Filing 920070613

Opinion

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UNPUBLISHED UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE FOURTH CIRCUIT No. 06-7868 NORMAN WESTLEY BRANCH, Petitioner - Appellant, versus VIRGINIA DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS, Respondent - Appellee. Appeal from the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, at Richmond. Henry E. Hudson, District Judge. (3:06-cv-00010-HEH) Submitted: May 9, 2007 Decided: June 13, 2007 Before NIEMEYER and DUNCAN, Circuit Judges, and HAMILTON, Senior Circuit Judge. Dismissed by unpublished per curiam opinion. Norman Westley Branch, Appellant Pro Se. III, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL Virginia, for Appellee. Donald Eldridge Jeffrey, OF VIRGINIA, Richmond, Unpublished opinions are not binding precedent in this circuit. PER CURIAM: Norman Westley Branch seeks to appeal the district court's order denying relief on his 28 U.S.C. 2254 (2000) petition. judge The order is not appealable unless a circuit justice or a certificate of appealability. 28 U.S.C. issues 2253(c)(1) (2000). A certificate of appealability will not issue absent "a substantial showing of the denial of a constitutional right." 28 U.S.C. 2253(c)(2) (2000). A prisoner satisfies this standard by demonstrating that reasonable jurists would find that any assessment of the constitutional claims by the district court is debatable or wrong and that any dispositive procedural ruling by the district court is likewise debatable. Miller-El v. Cockrell, 537 U.S. 322, 336-38 (2003); Slack v. McDaniel, 529 U.S. 473, 484 (2000); Rose v. Lee, 252 F.3d 676, 683-84 (4th Cir. 2001). We have independently reviewed the record and conclude that Branch has not made the requisite showing. Accordingly, we deny a certificate of appealability and dismiss the appeal. We grant the motion to amend the preliminary informal brief and dispense with oral argument because the facts and legal contentions are adequately presented in the materials before the court and argument would not aid the decisional process. DISMISSED - 2 -

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