Crapser v. Iowa, State of
ORDER re 1 Pro Se Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus filed by Kara Marie Crapser: The petitioner is directed to submit the $5.00 filing fee within 30 days of the date of this order. The petitioner's application for a writ of habeas corpus is denied. The clerk's office is directed to enter judgment in favor of the respondent. A certificate of appealability is denied. Signed by Judge Linda R Reade on 8/14/2017 (copy w/NEF mailed to Plt). (skm)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF IOWA
KARA MARIE CRAPSER,
STATE OF IOWA,1
This matter is before the court pursuant to the petitioner’s application for a writ of
habeas corpus (docket no. 1). The petitioner submitted such application on August 11,
The petitioner neither paid the required $5.00 filing fee, see 28 U.S.C. § 1914, nor
submitted an application to proceed in forma pauperis. Accordingly, the petitioner did not
properly commence this action, and it is subject to dismissal on this basis. Nonetheless,
the petitioner shall be directed to submit the $5.00 filing fee within 30 days of the date of
Rule 4 of the Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases requires the court to conduct an
initial review of the application for a writ of habeas corpus and summarily dismiss it, order
The petitioner brings this action against the State of Iowa, but the proper
respondent in a federal habeas corpus action is “the person having custody of the person
detained.” 28 U.S.C. § 2243; see also 28 U.S.C. § 2242 (stating application shall allege
the name of the person who has custody over him); Braden v. 30th Judicial Circuit Ct. of
Ky., 410 U.S. 484, 494-95 (1973) (“The writ of habeas corpus does not act upon the
prisoner who seeks relief, but upon the person who holds him in what is alleged to be
unlawful custody.”). Thus, the petitioner improperly named the State of Iowa as the
The petitioner signed her application for a writ of habeas corpus on July 28, 2017.
a response or “take such action as the judge deems appropriate.” See Rule 4, Rules
Governing Section 2254 Cases. The court may summarily dismiss an application for a writ
of habeas corpus without ordering a response if it plainly appears from the face of such
application and its exhibits that the petitioner is not entitled to relief. See id.; 28 U.S.C.
§ 2243; Small v. Endicott, 998 F.2d 411, 414 (7th Cir. 1993). For the reasons set forth
below, summary dismissal is appropriate in this case.
Applications for habeas corpus relief are subject to a one-year statute of limitation
as provided in 28 U.S.C. § 2244(d)(1). “By the terms of [28 U.S.C. §] 2244(d)(1), the
one-year limitation period [. . .] begins to run on one of several possible dates, including
the date on which the state court judgment against the petitioner became final.” Ford v.
Bowersox, 178 F.3d 522, 523 (8th Cir. 1999).3 It is clear that the statute of limitation
started to run in 2012, that is, the year in which the petitioner opted not to file a direct
appeal and her conviction for murder in the second degree became final. See Crapser v.
State, No. 16-0595, 2017 Iowa App. LEXIS 158 (Iowa Ct. App. Feb. 8, 2017); State v.
28 U.S.C. § 2244(d)(1) provides:
A 1-year period of limitation shall apply to an application for a writ
of habeas corpus by a person in custody pursuant to the judgment of
a State court. The limitation period shall run from the latest of—
(A) the date on which the judgment became final by the conclusion of
direct review or the expiration of the time for seeking such review;
(B) the date on which the impediment to filing an application created
by State action in violation of the Constitution or laws of the United
States is removed, if the applicant was prevented from filing by such
(C) the date on which the constitutional right asserted was initially
recognized by the Supreme Court, if the right has been newly
recognized by the Supreme Court and made retroactively applicable
to cases on collateral review; or
(D) the date on which the factual predicate of the claim or claims
presented could have been discovered through the exercise of due
Crapser, Case No. FECR010074 (Wright Cnty. Dist. Ct. 2012);4 see also 28 U.S.C. §
2244(d)(1)(A) (specifying that the 1-year period of limitation runs from “the date on which
the judgment became final by the conclusion of direct review or the expiration of the time
for seeking such review”); Gonzalez v. Thaler, 565 U.S. 134, 150 (2012) (explaining 28
U.S.C. § 2244(d)(1)(A)); Riddle v. Kemna, 523 F.3d 850, 855 (8th Cir. 2008) (stating that
the 90 days is not applicable and the one-year statute of limitation under 28 U.S.C. § 2254
runs from the date procedendo issued if the petitioner’s direct appeal does not contain a
claim that is reviewable by the Supreme Court); Snow v. Ault, 238 F.3d 1033, 1035 (8th
Cir. 2001) (stating that the running of the statute of limitation for purposes of 28 U.S.C.
§ 2244(d)(1)(A) is triggered by: (1) the conclusion of all direct criminal appeals in the state
system, followed by either the completion or denial of certiorari proceedings; or (2) the
conclusion of all direct criminal appeals in the state system followed by the expiration of
the 90 days allowed for filing a petition for a writ of certiorari in the United States
Supreme Court) (citing Smith v. Bowersox, 159 F.3d 345, 348 (8th Cir. 1998)).
Due to the one-year statute of limitation under 28 U.S.C. § 2254, the petitioner’s
application for a writ of habeas corpus is only timely if the period was “tolled” for all but
a period of less than one year between 2012, that is, the year that the petitioner’s
conviction became final, and July 28, 2017, that is, the date that the petitioner filed the
See Peterson v. Gammon, 200 F.3d 1202, 1204 (8th Cir. 2000).
Post-conviction relief actions filed before or during the limitation period for habeas corpus
actions are “pending” and the limitation period is tolled during: (1) the time “a properly
filed” post-conviction relief action is before the district court; (2) the time for filing of a
notice of appeal even if the petitioner does not appeal; and (3) the time for the appeal
Iowa state court criminal and civil records may be accessed online at:
dex.asp. See Stutzka v. McCarville, 420 F.3d 757, 760 n.2 (8th Cir. 2005) (addressing
court’s ability to take judicial notice of public records).
itself. See Williams v. Bruton, 299 F.3d 981, 983 (8th Cir. 2002) (discussing application
of 28 U.S.C. § 2244(d)(2)); see also Lawrence v. Florida, 549 U.S. 327, 332 (2007) (“[28
U.S.C.] § 2244(d)(2) does not toll the [one-year limitation] period during the pendency of
a petition for certiorari.”); Evans v. Chavis, 546 U.S. 189, 191 (2006) (holding that an
application is tolled during the interval “between (1) a lower court’s adverse determination,
and (2) the prisoner’s filing of notice of appeal, provided that the filing of the notice of
appeal is timely under state law”); Snow, 238 F.3d at 1035-36 (concluding that 28 U.S.C.
§ 2244(d)(2) does not toll the limitation period for the 90 days during which a petitioner
could seek certiorari from a state court’s denial of post-conviction relief).
After the petitioner’s conviction became final in 2012, the petitioner filed a state
post-conviction relief action on August 7, 2014, and procedendo issued with respect to
such action on March 29, 2017. See Crapser v. State, Case No. PCCV024088 (Wright
Cnty. Dist. Ct. 2016). After her state post-conviction relief action became final, the
petitioner waited until July 28, 2017 to file this action. Hence, the petitioner did not
pursue any type of state post-conviction relief for significant periods of time. See 28
U.S.C. § 2244(d)(2) (explaining that “[t]he time during which a properly filed application
for State post-conviction or other collateral review with respect to the pertinent judgment
or claim is pending [is not counted] toward any period of limitation”). Given the period
of time that the petitioner sought state post-conviction relief, it is clear that over one year,
that is, approximately 30 months, passed without any portion of the applicable period being
tolled. Indeed, because the petitioner’s conviction became final in 2012 and she waited
until August 7, 2014 to file a state post-conviction relief action, the statute of limitation ran
before she ever sought state post-conviction relief.5
The court notes that the issues asserted in the petitioner’s state post-conviction
relief action do not overcome the one-year period of limitation. See Crapser v. State, Case
No. PCCV024088 (Wright Cnty. Dist. Ct. 2016); see also 28 U.S.C. § 2244(d)(1)(A)-(D)
(specifying that the 1-year period of limitation runs from the latest of four dates). The
Because the one-year statue of limitation contained in 28 U.S.C. § 2244(d)(1) is a
statute of limitation rather than a jurisdictional bar, equitable tolling may apply. See King
v. Hobbs, 666 F.3d 1132, 1136 (8th Cir. 2012); Jihad v. Hvass, 267 F.3d 803, 805 (8th
Cir. 2001); Kreutzer v. Bowersox, 231 F.3d 460, 463 (8th Cir. 2000); Moore v. United
States, 173 F.3d 1131, 1135-36 (8th Cir. 1999). However, “[e]quitable tolling is proper
only when extraordinary circumstances beyond a prisoner’s control make it impossible to
file [an application] on time.” Kreutzer, 231 F.3d at 463; see also Delaney v. Matesanz,
264 F.3d 7, 14 (1st Cir. 2001) (“In the AEDPA environment, courts have indicated that
equitable tolling, if available at all, is the exception rather than the rule; resort to its
prophylaxis is deemed justified only in extraordinary circumstances.”); Harris v.
Hutchinson, 209 F.3d 325, 330 (4th Cir. 2000) (observing that equitable tolling is
“reserved for those rare instances where—due to circumstances external to the party’s own
conduct—it would be unconscionable to enforce the limitation period against the party and
gross injustice would result”); Paige v. United States, 171 F.3d 559, 561 (8th Cir. 1999)
(stating that equitable tolling is reserved for extraordinary circumstances beyond a
“[E]quitable tolling may be appropriate when conduct of the
[respondent] has lulled the [petitioner] into inaction.” Kreutzer, 231 F.3d at 463 (citing
Niccolai v. United States Bureau of Prisons, 4 F.3d 691, 693 (8th Cir.1993)). In this case,
the petitioner presents no extraordinary circumstances justifying the application of
equitable tolling. See Delaney, 264 F.3d at 14 (clarifying that a party who seeks to invoke
equitable tolling bears the burden of establishing the basis for it).
court also notes that the one-year statute of limitation contained in 28 U.S.C. § 2244 bars
a petitioner from filing a federal application for a writ of habeas corpus under 28 U.S.C.
§ 2254 if one year or more of the three-year period for filing a state application for postconviction relief under Iowa Code section 822 lapses. See Curtiss v. Mount Pleasant Corr.
Facility, 338 F.3d 851, 853-55 (8th Cir. 2003) (applying Painter v. Iowa, 247 F.3d 1255,
1256 (8th Cir. 2001)); see also Boston v. Weber, 525 F.3d 622, 626 (8th Cir. 2008)
(reiterating that Painter is consistent with the plain language of 28 U.S.C. § 2244).
Based on the foregoing, the petitioner’s application for a writ of habeas corpus shall
be denied as untimely. Judgment shall be entered in favor of the respondent. As for a
certificate of appealability, the petitioner has not made the requisite showing. See 28
U.S.C. § 2253(c)(2). Accordingly, a certificate of appealability shall be denied.
IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED:
(1) The petitioner is directed to submit the $5.00 filing fee within 30 days of the
date of this order.
(2) The petitioner’s application for a writ of habeas corpus is denied.
(3) The clerk’s office is directed to enter judgment in favor of the respondent.
(4) A certificate of appealability is denied.
DATED this 14th day of August, 2017.
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