Camunas v. People
ORDER DISMISSING CASE WITHOUT PREJUDICE. Signed by Judge Anthony J. Battaglia on 3/8/2017.(Blank Southern District of California amended petition form sent to Petitioner along with a copy of this order) (Certified Copy to USM) (fth)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA
MIGUEL V. CAMUNAS,
Case No.: 16cv2866-AJB (AGS)
ORDER DISMISSING CASE
On November 22, 2016, Petitioner, a state probationer proceeding pro se, filed a
Petition for a Writ of Habeas Corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254, along with a motion to
proceed in forma pauperis. (ECF Nos. 1-2.) On January 4, 2017, the Court granted
Petitioner leave to proceed in forma pauperis but dismissed the Petition with leave to
amend because Petitioner had failed to allege exhaustion of his state court remedies and
had failed to name a proper Respondent. (ECF No. 3.) Petitioner has now filed a First
Amended Petition. (ECF No. 4.) The First Amended Petition is subject to dismissal
because, although Petitioner has now alleged exhaustion of his state court remedies, he has
once again failed to name a proper Respondent.
As Petitioner was notified in this Court’s January 4, 2017 Order of dismissal, he
must name the state officer having custody of him as Respondent. Ortiz-Sandoval v.
Gomez, 81 F.3d 891, 894 (9th Cir. 1996), citing Rule 2(a), 28 U.S.C. foll. § 2254. Federal
courts lack personal jurisdiction when a habeas petition fails to name a proper respondent.
Id. In his original Petition, Petitioner named “People” as Respondent, and he was informed
in this Court’s previous Order of dismissal that “People” was an improper respondent
because to the extent he refers to the People of the State of California he was instructed
that a long standing rule in the Ninth Circuit holds “that a petitioner may not seek [a writ
of] habeas corpus against the State under . . . [whose] authority . . . the petitioner is in
respondent.” Ashley v. Washington, 394 F.2d 125, 126 (9th Cir. 1968). This requirement
exists because a writ of habeas corpus acts upon the custodian of the state prisoner, the
person who will produce “the body” if directed to do so by the Court.
The actual person who is [the] custodian [of the petitioner] must be the
Petitioner was instructed that if a “petitioner is on probation or parole, he may name
his probation or parole officer ‘and the official in charge of the parole or probation agency,
or the state correctional agency, as appropriate.’” Id., quoting Rule 2, 28 U.S.C. foll.
§ 2254 advisory committee’s note. In some cases, a petitioner may name the state attorney
In the First Amended Petition, Petitioner has once again incorrectly named “People”
as Respondent. In order for this Court to entertain a Petition for a Writ of Habeas Corpus,
Petitioner must name the person who will produce “the body” if directed to do so by the
Court. Because Petitioner is on probation, the proper respondents are his probation officer
and the official in charge of the probation agency. See Ortiz-Sandoval, 81 F.3d at 894.
The Court DISMISSES the case without prejudice due to Petitioner’s failure to
name a proper Respondent. If Petitioner wishes to proceed with this case, he must submit,
no later than May 15, 2017, a Second Amended Petition which names a proper
Respondent. The Clerk of Court shall send a blank Southern District of California amended
petition form to Petitioner along with a copy of this Order.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
Dated: March 8, 2017
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