Sandknop v. Prudden
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER: IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that plaintiffs motion to proceed in forma pauperis [ #2] isGRANTED.IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that petition must show cause within twenty-one (21) days from the date of this Order why this action should not be dismissed as time-barred. Signed by District Judge Ronnie L. White on 08/01/2017. (KCB)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF MISSOURI
No. 4:17-CV-2077 RLW
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
This matter is before the Court on the petition of Christopher Sandknop for a writ of
habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254. The petition appears to be barred by the limitations
period. As a result, petitioner must show cause why it should not be summarily dismissed.
On July 12, 2013, petitioner pled guilty as a chronic offender to one count of driving
while intoxicated. Missouri v. Sandknop, No. 12SL-CR12196 (St. Louis County). On the same
day, the court sentenced him to 10 years' imprisonment. The sentence required him to complete
a long-term substance abuse treatment program. He did not file a direct appeal.
Petitioner successfully completed the treatment program on May 1, 2014. See Sandknop
v. Goldman, No. ED101967 (Mo. Ct. App. 2014). After completion, the sentencing court was
required to either release him on probation or execute the remainder of the sentence under Mo.
Rev. Stat. § 217.362. Id. Instead, he remained in custody. Id. In July 2014, the court entered an
"Amended Order of Probation Pursuant to Section 559.115 RSMO," ordering the Missouri
Board of Probation and Parole to release him from the Department of Corrections on December
20, 2014, and place him on a five-year period of probation. Id.
On September 9, 2014, petitioner filed a petition for writ of mandamus in the Missouri
Court of Appeals requesting an order directing the trial court to comply with the requirements of
§ 217.362. Id. On December 9, 2014, the court granted the petition and directed the lower court
to either release him on probation or execute the remainder of the sentence. Id.
On December 16, 2014, the sentencing court ordered that petitioner be released from
confinement and placed him on a five-year period of probation. However, petitioner violated the
terms of probation, and on December 3, 2015, the court revoked his probation and ordered him
to serve the remainder of his ten-year sentence. He did not appeal.
In this case, petitioner argues that the sentencing court erred in finding him to be a
chronic offender because the State's evidence was insufficient to support the finding.
Specifically, he says the court erred in taking judicial notice of the clerk's "computerized
minutes" of his criminal history because they do not show whether he had been represented by
counsel or waived counsel in the previous cases. He maintains that the court was required to
have the full case files before him.
Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2244(d), a petitioner has one year from the date his judgment of
conviction becomes final within which to file a petition for writ of habeas corpus. The period is
tolled during the pendency of any properly filed motion for postconviction relief Id.
If no direct appeal is taken, a Missouri conviction becomes final ten days after the
judgment is entered. Mo. R. Civ. P. § 81.04(a). As a result, petitioner's judgment became final
on about July 22, 2013, and the period ended a year later. Petitioner did not take any action on
the judgment until September 9, 2014, when he filed his petition for writ of mandamus. As a
result, it appears that the one-year limitations period expired in July 2014 and this case is timebarred.
Furthermore, even if the limitations period was tolled through the mandamus proceedings
until petitioner was resentenced on December 3, 2015, the petition would still be time-barred.
For these reasons, petitioner must show cause why the petition should not be summarily
dismissed. See 28 U.S.C. § 2254 Rule 4; Day v. McDonough, 547 U.S. 198, 209 (2006) (district
court may dismiss § 2254 petition as time-barred on its own motion).
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that petitioner's motion for leave to proceed in forma
pauperis (Doc. 2) is GRANTED.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that petitioner must show cause within twenty-one (21)
days from the date of this Order why this action should not be dismissed as time-barred.
If petitioner does not comply with this Order, the Court will dismiss this action
without further proceedings.
~day of July, 2017.
RONNIE L. WHITE
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
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