Collins v. Steele
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER; IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that petitioner's Motion for Appointment of Counsel (Doc. No. 20 ) is DENIED. If the Court later determines that counsel is required, it will issue an appropriate order. Signed by Magistrate Judge Terry I. Adelman on 06/19/2013. (DJO)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF MISSOURI
BOBBY COLLINS, JR.,
No. 4:11CV328 CAS
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
This matter is before the Court on Petitioner’s Motion for Appointment of Counsel. The
cause was referred to the undersigned pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b).
On February 22, 2011, petitioner filed a petition under 28 U.S.C. § 2254 for a writ of habeas
corpus, raising three grounds for federal habeas relief. Respondent filed his Response on May 23,
2011. Petitioner retained counsel, who filed a 15-page Traverse, a 15-page Supplemental Traverse,
and numerous pages of exhibits. Counsel withdrew representation, and Petitioner filed a motion for
appointment of counsel on December 17, 2012, alleging that he is unable to pay for or obtain counsel
because of his poverty. Thus, he requests that the court appoint him an attorney.
“[T]here is neither a constitutional nor statutory right to counsel in habeas proceedings . . .”
McCall v. Benson, 114 F.3d 754, 756 (8th Cir. 1997). In order to determine whether appointment
of counsel is appropriate, the court must consider “the factual and legal complexity of the case, and
the petitioner’s ability both to investigate and to articulate his claims without court appointed
counsel.” Id. (citations omitted). In the instant case, Petitioner raises only three grounds for habeas
relief, and they do not appear to be factually or legally complex. Further, Petitioner’s prior counsel
has articulated Petitioner’s claims in a clear, concise manner in two Traverses and attached exhibits.
At this stage of the litigation, legal counsel is unnecessary. Thus, Petitioner’s motion for appointment
of counsel will be denied at this time.
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that petitioner’s Motion for Appointment of Counsel (Doc. No.
20) is DENIED. If the Court later determines that counsel is required, it will issue an appropriate
/s/ Terry I. Adelman
UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
Dated this 19th day of June, 2013.
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