Ratliffe v. Cuyahoga County Sheriff Department et al
Memorandum Opinion: I adopt in part and reject in part the Magistrate Judge's R & R. (Doc. No. 17). Ratliffe's § 2254 petition is dismissed because it is both moot and not cognizable for federal habeas review. Further, I cer tify, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a)(3), that an appeal of this decision could not be taken in good faith, and that there is no basis upon which to issue a certificate of appealability. 28 U.S.C. § 2253(c); Fed. R. App. P. 22(b). re 17 . Judge Jeffrey J. Helmick on 9/29/2017. (S,AL)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF OHIO
Case No. 16-cv-1923
Cuyahoga County Sheriff Department, et al.,
Before me is the Report and Recommendation of Magistrate Judge William H. Baughman,
Jr. filed on May 9, 2017, in the above-entitled action. (Doc. No. 17). Under the relevant statute:
Within [fourteen (14)] days after being served a copy of these proposed Findings and
Recommendation, any party who wishes to object must file and serve written
objections or further appeal is waived.
United States v. Campbell, 261 F.3d 628, 631-32 (6th Cir. 2001) (citation omitted); see also 28 U.S.C. §
636(b)(1) (effective Dec. 1, 2009); Fed. R. Civ. P. 72(b)(2). In this case, the fourteen day period has
elapsed and no objections have been filed.
The failure to file written objections to the Magistrate Judge’s Report and Recommendation
constitutes a waiver of a determination by the district court of an issue covered in the report.
Thomas v. Arn, 474 U.S. 140 (1985); see also United States v. Walters, 638 F.2d 947 (6th Cir. 1981).
Following review of the Magistrate Judge’s Report and Recommendation, I adopt the
conclusion of the Report and Recommendation as the Order of the Court, but reject the R & R in
part. (Doc. No. 17). At the outset, I adopt the Magistrate Judge’s recommendation that the petition
is not cognizable for federal review. Ratliffe asserted one ground of error in her § 2254 habeas
petition, that the state erred in calculating her credit for time served. But “federal habeas corpus
relief does not lie for errors of state law.” Lewis v. Jeffers, 497 U.S. 764, 780 (1990); see also Estelle v.
McGuire, 502 U.S. 62, 67-68 (1991) (“[I]t is not the province of a federal habeas court to reexamine
state-court determinations on state-law questions.”). Since this is purely a question of state
application of state law rather than a question of federal constitutional law, the sole ground for relief
asserted in the petition is not cognizable for federal review and the petition must be dismissed.
I reject the R & R with respect to the procedural history because the procedural history of
this case has changed since the time the R & R was issued. When Ratliffe filed this petition, her
motion for recalculation of time served was still pending before the Cuyahoga County Court of
Common Pleas and had been for over a year. Since there was no final order on the matter from the
state court, Ratliffe had not yet exhausted her state court remedies and the petition was premature.
It was not until August 16, 2017, over three months after the R & R was issued on May 9, 2017, that
the state court granted Ratliffe’s motion.1 Because of the additional 252 days granted as credit for
time served, she was released from custody on August 22, 2017.2 Ratliffe is no longer in custody
and this petition must be dismissed as moot. See 28 U.S.C. § 2254(a).
For the foregoing reasons, I adopt in part and reject in part the Magistrate Judge’s R & R.
(Doc. No. 17). Ratliffe’s § 2254 petition is dismissed because it is both moot and not cognizable for
federal habeas review. (Doc. No. 1). Accordingly, Respondent’s Motion to dismiss is granted.
(Doc. No. 15). Further, I certify, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a)(3), that an appeal of this decision
could not be taken in good faith, and that there is no basis upon which to issue a certificate of
appealability. 28 U.S.C. § 2253(c); Fed. R. App. P. 22(b).
s/ Jeffrey J. Helmick
United States District Judge
1 See attached: Exhibit 1—Cuyahoga Court of Common Pleas Docket, Case No. CR-07-503672-A, available at
2—Journal Entry granting Petitioner’s motion for jail credit time filed August 16, 2017.
2 See attached: Exhibit 3—ODRC record of Petitioner’s release from custody on August 22, 2017, available at
Disclaimer: Justia Dockets & Filings provides public litigation records from the federal appellate and district courts. These filings and docket sheets should not be considered findings of fact or liability, nor do they necessarily reflect the view of Justia.
Why Is My Information Online?