Allen Williams, Jr. v. Harold Clarke
UNPUBLISHED PER CURIAM OPINION filed. Originating case number: 2:16-cv-00139-MSD-LRL Copies to all parties and the district court. . [17-6478]
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UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS
FOR THE FOURTH CIRCUIT
ALLEN DALE WILLIAMS, JR.,
Petitioner - Appellant,
HAROLD W. CLARKE, Director,
Respondent - Appellee.
Appeal from the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, at
Norfolk. Mark S. Davis, District Judge. (2:16-cv-00139-MSD-LRL)
Submitted: August 29, 2017
Decided: September 21, 2017
Before GREGORY, Chief Judge, NIEMEYER, Circuit Judge, and HAMILTON, Senior
Dismissed by unpublished per curiam opinion.
David Bernard Hargett, HARGETT LAW, PLC, Glen Allen, Virginia, for Appellant.
Donald Eldridge Jeffrey, III, Assistant Attorney General, Richmond, Virginia, for
Unpublished opinions are not binding precedent in this circuit.
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Allen Dale Williams, Jr., seeks to appeal the district court’s order adopting in part
the recommendation of the magistrate judge and denying relief on his 28 U.S.C. § 2254
(2012) petition. The order is not appealable unless a circuit justice or judge issues a
certificate of appealability.
28 U.S.C. § 2253(c)(1)(A) (2012).
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) (2012). When the district court denies relief on the
merits, a prisoner satisfies this standard by demonstrating that reasonable jurists would
find that the district court’s assessment of the constitutional claims is debatable or wrong.
Slack v. McDaniel, 529 U.S. 473, 484 (2000); see Miller-El v. Cockrell, 537 U.S. 322,
336-38 (2003). When the district court denies relief on procedural grounds, the prisoner
must demonstrate both that the dispositive procedural ruling is debatable, and that the
petition states a debatable claim of the denial of a constitutional right. Slack, 529 U.S. at
We have independently reviewed the record and conclude that Williams has not
made the requisite showing. Accordingly, we deny a certificate of appealability and
dismiss the appeal.
We dispense with oral argument because the facts and legal
contentions are adequately presented in the materials before this court and argument
would not aid the decisional process.
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