Houston v. State of Missouri
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that petitioner's motion to proceed in forma pauperis [Doc. #1] is GRANTED. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that petitioners petition for writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241 is DENIED. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the Court will not issue a certificate of appealability. A separate Judgment shall accompany this Memorandum and Order. Signed by District Judge Audrey G. Fleissig on 7/8/2013. (NCL)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF MISSOURI
MICHAEL J. HOUSTON,
STATE OF MISSOURI,
No. 4:13CV1242 AGF
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
This matter is before the Court on petitioner’s application for writ of habeas
corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241.
Petitioner, a pretrial detainee at St. Louis City Justice Center, has filed his
petition, alleging that: (1) DNA evidence was improperly gathered and introduced in
his current state criminal proceedings; (2) as a result of improperly gathered DNA
evidence and purportedly false “eyewitness testimony” he is being improperly held on
detainer past his completed sentence; and (3) he believes the charges on which he is
being held should have been dropped based on the victim’s identification of a different
person as the alleged perpetrator. In conclusion, petitioner believes that his state
motion to compel production of discovery and DNA witnesses, filed in March of 2013,
has not been given “the day in Court he believes it deserves” because the May hearing
date was continued and his attorney failed to appear in a timely manner for the June
hearing date. Petitioner states that his motion is now set for a hearing in August of
As such, petitioner asserts in a conclusory manner that he is entitled to
“discovery and speedy trial.”
After reviewing petitioner’s motion and the accompanying exhibits, the petition
will be summarily denied.
Under 28 U.S.C. § 2241(c)(3), the federal courts have jurisdiction over pretrial
habeas petitions. Neville v. Cavanagh, 611 F.2d 673, 675 (7th Cir.1979). “Despite
the existence of jurisdiction, however, federal courts are reluctant to grant pre-trial
habeas relief.” Id. Only when “special circumstances” exist will a federal court find
that a pretrial detainee has exhausted state remedies. Id. “In most cases courts will not
consider claims that can be raised at trial and in subsequent state proceeding.” Blanck
v. Waukesha County, 48 F. Supp. 2d 859, 860 (D. Wis. 1999). Courts have found that
“special circumstances” existed where double jeopardy was at issue or where a speedy
trial claim was raised. Braden v. 30th Judicial Circuit Court, 410 U.S. 484, 488
(1973) (speedy trial); Blanck, 48 F. Supp. 2d at 860 (double jeopardy).
The grounds raised by petitioner do not constitute the “special circumstances”
required for a finding that he has exhausted his available state remedies. Petitioner’s
allegations are conclusory and do not contain any facts, which if proved, would
demonstrate that he has been deprived of the right to a speedy trial or that he has been
put in double jeopardy. Additionally, the claims raised by petitioner can be adequately
raised with his appointed counsel, at trial and in subsequent state proceedings. As a
result, the Court will deny the petition.
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that petitioner’s motion to proceed in forma
pauperis [Doc. #1] is GRANTED.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that petitioner’s petition for writ of habeas
corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241 is DENIED.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the Court will not issue a certificate of
A separate Judgment shall accompany this Memorandum and Order.
Dated this 8th day of July, 2013.
AUDREY G. FLEISSIG
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
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