(HC) Martin v. Pfeiffer
ORDER GRANTING Petitioner Leave to Amend; ORDER DIRECTING Clerk of Court to Send Petitioner Blank 2254 Form, signed by Magistrate Judge Stanley A. Boone on 11/17/2021. Amended petition due within thirty (30) days. (Attachments: # 1 Blank 2254 habeas form) (Rivera, O)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA
JARED ANDREW MARTIN,
Case No. 1:21-cv-01622-SAB-HC
ORDER GRANTING PETITIONER LEAVE
ORDER DIRECTING CLERK OF COURT
TO SEND PETITIONER BLANK § 2254
Petitioner is a state prisoner proceeding pro se with a petition for writ of habeas corpus
18 pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254.
Rule 4 of the Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases (“Habeas Rules”) require preliminary
22 review of a habeas petition and allow a district court to dismiss a petition before the respondent
23 is ordered to file a response, if it “plainly appears from the petition and any attached exhibits that
24 the petitioner is not entitled to relief in the district court.” Rule 4, Rules Governing Section 2254
25 Cases in the United States District Courts, 28 U.S.C. foll. § 2254.
A. Habeas Jurisdiction
A claim falls within the “core of habeas corpus” when a prisoner challenges “the fact or
28 duration of his confinement” and “seeks either immediate release from that confinement or the
1 shortening of its duration.” Preiser v. Rodriguez, 411 U.S. 475, 489 (1973). The Ninth Circuit
2 has adopted a rule that a “state prisoner’s claim [that] does not lie at ‘the core of habeas corpus’
3 . . . must be brought, ‘if at all,’ under § 1983.” Nettles v. Grounds, 830 F.3d 922, 934 (9th Cir.
4 2016) (en banc) (quoting Preiser, 411 U.S. at 487; Skinner v. Switzer, 562 U.S. 521, 535 n.13
5 (2011)). Therefore, if “success on [Petitioner]’s claims would not necessarily lead to his
6 immediate or earlier release from confinement, [Petitioner]’s claim does not fall within ‘the core
7 of habeas corpus,’ and he must instead bring his claim under § 1983.” Nettles, 830 F.3d at 935
8 (quoting Skinner, 562 U.S. at 535 n.13).
In Ground One of the petition, Petitioner asserts misconduct and corruption in the
10 California Department of Correction and Rehabilitation, alleging that he has been starved,
11 beaten, abused, harassed, threatened by correctional officers, written up for violations he had not
12 committed, and given referrals to the district attorney’s office based on lies and perjury. (ECF
13 No. 1 at 5).1 In Ground Two, Petitioner asserts medical malpractice, misdiagnosis, and improper
14 medical treatment. (Id.). In Ground Three, Petitioner asserts deliberate indifference, unnecessary
15 infliction of pain, and denial of pain management. (Id. at 6). In Ground Four, Petitioner asserts
16 claims regarding excessive force and false rules violation reports that resulted in the loss of good
17 time credits. (Id.). In Ground Five, Petitioner alleges that correctional officers have beaten him,
18 attempted to kill him, and tried to cover it up. (Id.). In Ground Six, Petitioner asserts a use of
19 force claim. (Id. at 7). In Ground Seven, Petitioner alleges that prison officials tampered with his
20 confidential legal mail. (Id. at 8). In Ground Eight, Petitioner asserts cruel and unusual
21 punishment and discrimination. (Id.).
The Ninth Circuit has “long held that prisoners may not challenge mere conditions of
23 confinement in habeas corpus.” Nettles, 830 F.3d at 933 (citing Crawford v. Bell, 599 F.2d 890,
24 891–92 (9th Cir. 1979)). Apart from the challenge to rules violation reports that resulted in the
25 loss of good time credits, which is addressed in section I(B), infra, Petitioner’s claims challenge
26 his conditions of confinement and thus are not cognizable in federal habeas corpus.
Page numbers refer to ECF page numbers stamped at the top of the page.
B. Rule 2 of the Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases
Habeas Rule 2(c) provides that a petition must “specify all the grounds for relief available
3 to the petitioner” and “state the facts supporting each ground.” Habeas Rule 2(c)(1)–(2). “A
4 prime purpose of Rule 2(c)’s demand that habeas petitioners plead with particularity is to assist
5 the district court in determining whether the State should be ordered to ‘show cause why the writ
6 should not be granted.’” Mayle v. Felix, 545 U.S. 644, 656 (2005) (quoting 28 U.S.C. § 2243).
Here, other than conclusory statements, Petitioner has not provided any supporting
8 factual allegations regarding his challenge to rules violation reports that resulted in the loss of
9 good time credits, his sole claim that is potentially cognizable in federal habeas corpus. “Prison
10 disciplinary proceedings are not part of a criminal prosecution, and the full panoply of rights due
11 a defendant in such proceedings does not apply.” Wolff v. McDonnell, 418 U.S. 539, 556 (1974).
12 With respect to prison disciplinary proceedings, the minimum procedural requirements that must
13 be met are: (1) written notice of the charges; (2) at least 24 hours between the time the prisoner
14 receives written notice and the time of the hearing, so that the prisoner may prepare his defense;
15 (3) a written statement by the fact finders of the evidence they rely on and reasons for taking
16 disciplinary action; (4) the right of the prisoner to call witnesses in his defense, when permitting
17 him to do so would not be unduly hazardous to institutional safety or correctional goals; and (5)
18 assistance to the prisoner where the prisoner is illiterate or the issues presented are legally
19 complex. Id. at 563–71. As long as the five minimum Wolff requirements are met, due process
20 has been satisfied. Walker v. Sumner, 14 F.3d 1415, 1420 (9th Cir. 1994), abrogated on other
21 grounds by Sandin v. Connor, 515 U.S. 472 (1995). In addition, “some evidence” must support
22 the decision of the hearing officer, Superintendent v. Hill, 472 U.S. 445, 455 (1985), and the
23 evidence must have some indicia of reliability, Cato v. Rushen, 824 F.2d 703, 705 (9th Cir.
24 1987). The “some evidence” standard is not particularly stringent, and the relevant inquiry is
25 whether “there is any evidence in the record that could support the conclusion reached.” Hill,
26 472 U.S. at 455–56.
As the petition fails to state a cognizable claim for federal habeas relief, it should be
28 dismissed. However, a petition for habeas corpus should not be dismissed without leave to
1 amend unless it appears that no tenable claim for relief can be pleaded were such leave granted.
2 Jarvis v. Nelson, 440 F.2d 13, 14 (9th Cir. 1971). Therefore, the Court will grant Petitioner an
3 opportunity to file an amended petition.
Accordingly, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that:
1. Petitioner is GRANTED leave to file a first amended petition within THIRTY (30) days
of the date of service of this order; and
2. The Clerk of Court is DIRECTED to send Petitioner a blank § 2254 habeas form.
Petitioner is forewarned that failure to follow this order may result in a recommendation
11 for dismissal of the petition for the reasons stated above and pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil
12 Procedure 41(b) (a petitioner’s failure to prosecute or to comply with a court order may result in
13 a dismissal of the action).
IT IS SO ORDERED.
November 17, 2021
UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
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