RULLAN v. THE STATE OF NEW JERSEY et al
MEMORANDUM OPINION. Signed by Judge Noel L. Hillman on 5/23/2017. (tf, n.m.)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
DISTRICT OF NEW JERSEY
STATE OF NEW JERSEY, et al., :
Civ. Action No. 16-2332 (NLH)
Anthony Rullan, # 723994-561599B
South Woods State Prison
215 Burlington Road
Bridgeton, NJ 08302
Petitioner Pro se
HILLMAN, District Judge
Petitioner Anthony Rullan, a prisoner currently confined at
the South Woods State Prison in Bridgeton, New Jersey, has
submitted a Petition for a Writ of Habeas Corpus Pursuant to 28
U.S.C. § 2254. (Pet., ECF No. 1.)
IT APPEARING THAT:
In 2011, Petitioner was convicted in New Jersey state
court of two counts of offensive touching, one count of
endangering the welfare of a child, and two counts of sexual
assault. (Pet. 2.)
Petitioner’s conviction was affirmed on
direct appeal on September 14, 2015 and the New Jersey Supreme
Court denied certification on January 15, 2016.
the Petition, Petitioner states that he filed a Petition for
Post-Conviction Relief (“PCR”) on February 10, 2016 which “has
not been heard or yet decided.” (Id. at 13).
filed the instant habeas Petition, which is dated April 22,
(ECF No. 1.)
The Petition raises three grounds for
relief based on ineffective assistance of counsel.
After conducting an initial screening of the Petition,
the Court concluded that the claims may be unexhausted and
ordered Petitioner to show cause why it should not be dismissed
for that reason.
(ECF No. 2.)
After reviewing Petitioner’s
subsequent response (ECF No. 3), the Court found that the claims
are unexhausted and subject to dismissal for failure to exhaust
under 28 U.S.C. § 2254(b)(1).
(ECF Nos. 4, 5.)
Though a habeas petition can be stayed in certain
limited circumstances, see Rhines v. Weber, 544 U.S. 269, 27576, the Court further found that such circumstances did not
exist in this case because there do not appear to be timeliness
(July 26, 2016 Opinion 8, ECF No. 4.)
because Petitioner filed a timely direct appeal, requested
certification from the New Jersey Supreme Court, and then filed
a timely PCR petition, the one year statute of limitations which
governs habeas petitions has not begun to run in this case.
28 U.S.C. § 2244(d)(2); Gonzalez v. Thaler, 132 S. Ct. 641, 65354 (2012).
When dismissing the Petition, the Court gave Petitioner
permission to file a motion for reconsideration if the state
court determines that Petitioner’s PCR petition is untimely or
if Petitioner is “reasonably confused” as to whether it was
(July 26th Opinion 9, n.4.)
The Court further
instructed that any such motion must specify facts showing the
basis for Petitioner’s reasonable confusion as to the proper
filing of the PCR petition.
On August 28, 2016, Petitioner filed the Motion for
Reconsideration currently before the Court.
(ECF No. 7.)
contents of that Motion have left the Court confused as to the
grounds Petitioner wishes to raise in this matter.
Specifically, Petitioner states the following:
According to my filing on Thur. March 10, 2016
I had sent to the Judicial Officer an
information briefing in regarding to the 2011
Only in revealing contradiction’s of
Accuser’s. And Failure of Trial Counsel.
Therefore, the accurate ground’s were not in
Just those few from the Appellate
Counsel, showing it has been fault.
And on Tue April 12, 2016 Petition Application
has been sent in regarding to the 2007 case. 1
As discussed in the Court’s previous Opinion, Petitioner filed
another petition for writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
§ 2254, which was given Civil Action No. 15-140.
Petition filed in that case references a different New Jersey State
And by answering question Number 15 in Page 13
within the Petition Application gave me the
opportunity to introduse the 2011 case.
revealing some information as to contradiction
in hoping that you may see the contradiction’s
of both case’s.
As I had explained in the
letter dated then June 16, 2016 to show cause
(by court order) in case # 1:16-cv-02332 NLH.
Therefore, and on Fri April 22, 2016 Petition
Application has been sent regarding to the
2011 case. And a briefing supporting fact’s
revealing contradiction’s. there, again, the
proper accurate ground’s with explanation of
each ground as required were not in it.
The briefing for 2011 which is this case is
missing. It has not been sent to you on nether
date mentioned above.
You only have the
Petition Application for the 2011 case and a
briefing regarding to the 2007 case supporting
fact’s which was to be used for cross
reference with the 2011 briefing.
I therefore respectively had sent you the
missing 2011 briefing which you don’t have,
within this motion.
Therefore, for the
purpose of the 2007 briefing is to be used for
cross reference with the 2011 briefing which
the 2007 briefing was more in focus as
introduction with the reflecting similarity
and it’s contradictions of my accuser’s and in
connection with this 2011 case.
You had respectively made a ruling based on
incorrect information and by a mis of
Court case, Case No. A-1828-12T3, with a conviction date of March
14, 2007, and a sentencing date of March 28, 2008.
Petitioner clarifies in his response to the Order to Show Cause
that there exist two separate convictions involving similar
allegations and the same parties. (Pet’r’s Resp. 3, ECF No. 3).
Therefore, although the grounds for relief asserted in both
petitions are similar, it appears that the petition in Civil Action
No. 15-140 challenges a separate New Jersey State conviction and
is properly docketed as a separate case.
understanding the detail’s of my intentions of
which I had provided you with.
(Id. at 2-3.)
As the Court noted in its previous Opinion, the
Petition itself raises only three ineffective assistance claims.
Though it is not clear, it appears that Petitioner is suggesting
that the thirty grounds identified in the “2011 Briefing”
attached to the instant Motion are also grounds which he wishes
to raise before this Court.
However, Petitioner provides no
information as to the exhaustion of these thirty issues. 2
Given the Court’s confusion as to the exact claims
Petitioner wishes to raise in this matter, and whether said
claims are properly exhausted, the Court will require Petitioner
to submit an amended petition which includes all claims he
wishes to raise challenging his 2011 conviction.
He must also
provide information regarding the exhaustion of each claim.
the amended petition contains unexhausted claims, Petitioner
must file a motion to stay which addresses the considerations
outlined in the Court’s July 26th Opinion.
Because Petitioner has not made a substantial showing
of the denial of a constitutional right, no Certificate of
It does appear that the three ineffective assistance of counsel
claims from his original Petition are included as Grounds Three
through Five of the “briefing.”
Appealability will issue pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2253(c).
FED. R. APP. P. 22(b)(1).
An appropriate order follows.
Dated: May 23, 2017
At Camden, New Jersey
s/ Noel L. Hillman
NOEL L. HILLMAN, U.S.D.J.
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