Geeter v. Horton

Filing 11

ORDER denying 10 Motion to Appoint Counsel. Signed by District Judge John Corbett O'Meara. (WBar)

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UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF MICHIGAN SOUTHERN DIVISION CHARLES GEETER, #223130, Petitioner, CASE NO. 5:17-CV-11510 HONORABLE JOHN CORBETT O’MEARA v. CONNIE HORTON, Respondent. __________________________________/ ORDER DENYING PETITIONER’S MOTION FOR APPOINTMENT OF COUNSEL Michigan prisoner Charles Geeter (“Petitioner”) has filed a pro se petition for a writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254 asserting that he is incarcerated in violation of his constitutional rights. This matter is before the Court on Petitioner’s motion for appointment of counsel. In support of his motion, Petitioner states that he is unable to afford counsel, that his ability to litigate is hampered by his imprisonment, and that his case involves complex and conflicting legal and factual issues. Petitioner has no absolute right to be represented by counsel on federal habeas review. See Abdur-Rahman v. Michigan Dept. of Corrections, 65 F.3d 489, 492 (6th Cir. 1995); see also Wright v. West, 505 U.S. 277, 293 (1992) (citing Pennsylvania v. Finley, 481 U.S. 551, 555 (1987)). “‘[A]ppointment of counsel in a civil case is . . . a matter within the discretion of the court. It is a privilege and not a right.’” Childs v. Pellegrin, 822 F.2d 1382, 1384 (6th Cir. 1987) (quoting United States v. Madden, 352 F.2d 792, 793 (9th Cir. 1965)). In this case, Petitioner has submitted his habeas petition, but Respondent has not yet filed an answer to the petition or the state court record. Those materials are due on December 12, 2017. Petitioner’s request is therefore premature. Moreover, an initial review of the petition indicates that the appointment of counsel is not necessary at this time. The Court will bear in mind Petitioner’s request if, upon a more detailed review of all of the relevant documents, the Court determines that appointment of counsel is necessary. Petitioner need not file an additional motion concerning this issue. Accordingly, the Court DENIES WITHOUT PREJUDICE Petitioner’s motion for appointment of counsel. IT IS ORDERED. s/John Corbett O’Meara United States District Judge Date: July 18, 2017 I hereby certify that a copy of the foregoing document was served upon the parties of record on this date, July 18, 2017, using the ECF system and/or ordinary mail. s/William Barkholz Case Manager 2

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