Darden v. Palmer
ORDER DISMISSING CASE As Duplicative; Denying Certificate of Appealability; Denying Leave to Proceed In Forma Pauperis on Appeal Signed by District Judge Victoria A. Roberts. (CPin)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF MICHIGAN
EDWARD DARDEN, JR., #831481,
CASE NO. 2:16-CV-11184
HONORABLE VICTORIA A. ROBERTS
OPINION AND ORDER DISMISSING THE HABEAS CASE AS DUPLICATIVE,
DENYING A CERTIFICATE OF APPEALABILITY, AND
DENYING LEAVE TO PROCEED IN FORMA PAUPERIS ON APPEAL
This is a habeas case brought pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254. Edward Darden, Jr.
(“Petitioner”), a state prisoner confined at the Michigan Reformatory in Ionia, Michigan,
challenges his convictions for second-degree murder, reckless driving causing death, reckless
driving causing serious impairment of bodily function, failure to stop at the scene of an accident
when at fault resulting in death, and failure to stop at the scene of an accident resulting in serious
impairment or death following a jury trial in the Wayne County Circuit Court in 2012. He was
sentenced as a second habitual offender to concurrent terms of 25 to 40 years imprisonment, two
terms of 10 to 22 ½ years imprisonment, and two terms of 4 to 7 ½ years imprisonment on those
convictions. In his pleadings, he raises claims concerning the sufficiency of the evidence and
Petitioner has already filed a federal habeas action with this Court challenging the same
state convictions, which is currently pending before another district judge. See Darden v.
Palmer, Case No. 2:16-CV-11127 (E.D. Mich.) (Rosen, J.). Accordingly, the instant action must
be dismissed as duplicative. A suit is duplicative, and subject to dismissal, if the claims, parties,
and available relief do not significantly differ between the two actions. See, e.g., Barapind v.
Reno, 72 F. Supp. 2d 1132, 1145 (E.D. Cal. 1999) (internal citations omitted). Such is the case
here. The instant action is duplicative of his previously filed and pending habeas case. Because
Petitioner challenges the same convictions in both cases and raises the same claims, the Court
will dismiss this second habeas case as duplicative. See Harrington v. Stegall, 2002 WL
373113, *2 (E.D. Mich. Feb. 28, 2002); Colon v. Smith, 2000 WL 760711, *1, n. 1 (E.D. Mich.
May 8, 2000); see also Davis v. United States Parole Comm’n, 870 F.2d 657, 1989 WL 25837,
*1 (6th Cir. March 7, 1989) (district court may dismiss a habeas petition as duplicative of a
pending habeas petition when the second petition is essentially the same as the first petition).1
Accordingly, the Court DISMISSES the instant habeas case as duplicative. This dismissal is
without prejudice to Petitioner’s habeas action in Case No. 2:16-CV-11127. This case is closed.
Before Petitioner may appeal this decision, a certificate of appealability must issue. See
28 U.S.C. § 2253(c)(1)(a); Fed. R. App. P. 22(b). A certificate of appealability may issue “only
if the applicant has made a substantial showing of the denial of a constitutional right.” 28 U.S.C.
§ 2253(c)(2). When a district court denies a habeas claim on procedural grounds without
addressing the merits, a certificate of appealability should issue if it is shown that jurists of
reason would find it debatable whether the petitioner states a valid claim of the denial of a
constitutional right, and that jurists of reason would find it debatable whether the court was
correct in its procedural ruling. Slack v. McDaniel, 529 U.S. 473, 484-85 (2000). Reasonable
The Court notes that the duplicative filing may have been due to separate mailings by
Petitioner or a filing error by the Court. In any event, the result is the same – the instant case
must be dismissed.
jurists could not debate the correctness of the Court’s procedural ruling. Accordingly, the Court
DENIES a certificate of appealability. The Court also DENIES leave to proceed in forma
pauperis on appeal as an appeal cannot be take in good faith. Fed. R. App. P. 24(a).
IT IS SO ORDERED.
S/Victoria A. Roberts
VICTORIA A. ROBERTS
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Dated: April 14, 2016
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