Slaton v. Dunn
MEMORANDUM OPINION. Signed by Judge L Scott Coogler on 5/17/2017. (PSM)
2017 May-17 PM 02:20
U.S. DISTRICT COURT
N.D. OF ALABAMA
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF ALABAMA
NATHAN D. SLATON,
JEFFERSON S. DUNN,
Case No.: 4:15-cv-00900-LSC-JHE
On May 29, 2015, Petitioner Nathan Slaton (“Slaton”) filed a petition for a writ of habeas
corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254, requesting relief from his sentence of mandatory life
imprisonment without parole. (Doc. 1). Because Slaton has obtained the relief requested in his
petition for habeas relief, he now moves to dismiss this pending habeas action as moot. (Doc. 8).
The motion is due to be GRANTED.
Slaton was convicted of one count of capital murder for an incident that occurred when
he was 17 years old. On July 9, 2007, Slaton was sentenced to life imprisonment without parole,
which was the mandatory minimum sentence for a 17-year-old child convicted of capital murder
in Alabama. See ALA. CODE § 13A-6-2(c); Roper v. Simmons, 543 U.S. 551, 578 (2005).
After the decision in Miller v. Alabama, 567 U.S. 460 (2012), which invalidated his
mandatory life-without-parole sentence, Slaton sought relief in the state courts. On May 9, 2014,
the Marshall County Circuit Court ordered the dismissal of Slaton’s petition without a hearing on
the grounds that Slaton was not entitled to relief because of the Eleventh Circuit Court of
Appeals’ decision that Miller is not retroactive. Order Dismissing Slaton’s Rule 32 Petition,
Slaton v. State, No. CC-87-200210.62 (Ala. Cir. Ct. May 9, 2014) (citing In re Morgan, 713 F.3d
1365 (11th Cir. 2013)). The trial court’s decision was affirmed on appeal. Slaton v. State, No.
CR-13-1367 (Ala. Crim. App. Nov. 14, 2014).
After Slaton filed his petition in this Court, the United States Supreme Court decided
Montgomery v. Louisiana, 136 S. Ct. 718 (2016), establishing the retroactivity of Miller. The
Supreme Court also remanded Slaton’s case for further consideration in light of Miller and
Montgomery, Slaton v. Alabama, 136 S. Ct. 2445 (2016) (mem.), and the Alabama Court of
Criminal Appeals did so as well, Order After Remand by the United States Supreme Court,
Slaton v. State, No. CR-13-1367 (Ala. Crim. App. Aug. 31, 2016). On May 4, 2017, the Marshall
County Circuit Court entered an order granting relief from Slaton’s mandatory sentences of life
without parole. Because Slaton has obtained the relief requested in his petition for habeas relief,
his petition will be dismissed as MOOT.
Based on the foregoing, the Petitioner’s motion to dismiss, (doc. 8), is GRANTED. A
separate order will be entered.
DONE and ORDERED on May 17, 2017.
L. Scott Coogler
United States District Judge
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