Runquist v. Woodford et al

Filing 5

ORDER signed by Judge Peter A. Nowinski on 1/5/06 DENYING 3 Motion to Appoint Counsel. (Donati, J)

Download PDF
(HC) Runquist v. Woodford et al Doc. 5 Case 2:05-cv-02614-GEB-EFB Document 5 Filed 01/06/2006 Page 1 of 3 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 vs. K. Prosper, Warden, et al., Respondents. -oOoPetitioner requests appointment of counsel on the grounds he is indigent and lacks legal training and the law is complex. There is no absolute right to appointment of counsel in habeas proceedings. Cir. 1996). See Nevius v. Sumner, 105 F.3d 453, 460 (9th Richard G. Runquist, Petitioner, No. Civ. S-05-2614 GEB PAN P Order United States District Court Eastern District of California However, whenever the court determines the interests of justice so require, representation may be provided for any financially eligible person who is seeking relief under section 18 U.S.C. 2254. 18 U.S.C. 3006A(a)(2)(B). Unless an evidentiary hearing is necessary, the decision to appoint counsel Dockets.Justia.com Case 2:05-cv-02614-GEB-EFB Document 5 Filed 01/06/2006 Page 2 of 3 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 is discretionary. Bashor v. Risley, 730 F.2d 1228, 1234 (9th Cir.), cert. denied, 469 U.S. 838 (1984); Rule 8(c), Rules Governing 2254 Cases. In deciding whether to appoint counsel the court exercises discretion governed by a number of factors, including the likelihood of success on the merits and the applicant's ability to present his claims in light of their complexity. Weygandt v. Look, 718 F.2d 952, 954 (9th Cir. 1983); see also, LaMere v. Risley, 827 F.2d 622, 626 (9th Cir. 1987). Ordinarily the presumption of regularity in the state's procedures for confining prisoners suggests a lack of likely success and counsels against appointment of counsel. (7th Cir. 1981). See Maclin v. Freake, 650 F.2d 885, 887 As a general rule, the court will not appoint counsel unless the applicant shows his claim has merit in fact and law. Id. Even if the applicant overcomes this hurdle, the court will not appoint counsel if the law is settled and the material facts are within the petitioner's possession, viz., they do not require investigation outside the prison walls. 887-88. Here, petitioner alleges his plea of guilty was involuntary and he was sentenced in excess of the statutory maximum without a jury finding beyond a reasonable doubt the facts necessary to impose such a sentence. settled. The law governing these issues is Id. at Neither factual development nor legal insight are required because these proceedings are limited to claims that already were identified and presented to the California Supreme 2 Case 2:05-cv-02614-GEB-EFB Document 5 Filed 01/06/2006 Page 3 of 3 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 Court. There is, on the record before the court, no reason to believe appointment of counsel would be of significant benefit. Petitioner's December 27, 2005, motion for appointment of counsel therefore is denied. So ordered. Dated: January 5, 2006. /s/ Peter A. Nowinski PETER A. NOWINSKI Magistrate Judge 3

Disclaimer: Justia Dockets & Filings provides public litigation records from the federal appellate and district courts. These filings and docket sheets should not be considered findings of fact or liability, nor do they necessarily reflect the view of Justia.


Why Is My Information Online?