Hill v. Director TDCJ

Filing 7

MEMORANDUM ORDER ADOPTING 5 REPORT AND RECOMMENDATIONS. Signed by Judge Michael H. Schneider on 1/26/16. (ljw, )

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IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF TEXAS LUFKIN DIVISION ARTHUR D. HILL § VS. § DIRECTOR, TDCJ-CID § CIVIL ACTION NO. 9:15-CV-105 MEMORANDUM ORDER ADOPTING THE MAGISTRATE JUDGE’S REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION Petitioner Arthur D. Hill, a prisoner confined at the Eastham Unit of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, Correctional Institutions Division, proceeding pro se, filed this petition for writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254. The court referred this matter to the Honorable Zack Hawthorn, United States Magistrate Judge, at Beaumont, Texas, for consideration pursuant to applicable laws and orders of this court. The magistrate judge recommends denying the petition. The court has received and considered the Report and Recommendation of United States Magistrate Judge filed pursuant to such order, along with the record and the pleadings. No objections to the Report and Recommendation of United States Magistrate Judge were filed by the parties. In this case, the petitioner is not entitled to the issuance of a certificate of appealability. An appeal from a judgment denying federal habeas corpus relief may not proceed unless a judge issues a certificate of appealability. See 28 U.S.C. § 2253; FED. R. APP. P. 22(b). The standard for granting a certificate of appealability, like that for granting a certificate of probable cause to appeal under prior law, requires the petitioner to make a substantial showing of the denial of a federal constitutional right. See Slack v. McDaniel, 529 U.S. 473, 483-84 (2000); Elizalde v. Dretke, 362 F.3d 323, 328 (5th Cir. 2004); see also Barefoot v. Estelle, 463 U.S. 880, 893 (1982). In making that substantial showing, the petitioner need not establish that he should prevail on the merits. Rather, he must demonstrate that the issues are subject to debate among jurists of reason, that a court could resolve the issues in a different manner, or that the questions presented are worthy of encouragement to proceed further. See Slack, 529 U.S. at 483-84; Avila v. Quarterman, 560 F.3d 299, 304 (5th Cir. 2009). If the petition was denied on procedural grounds, the petitioner must show that jurists of reason would find it debatable: (1) whether the petition raises a valid claim of the denial of a constitutional right, and (2) whether the district court was correct in its procedural ruling. Slack, 529 U.S. at 484; Elizalde, 362 F.3d at 328. Any doubt regarding whether to grant a certificate of appealability is resolved in favor of the petitioner, and the severity of the penalty may be considered in making this determination. See Miller v. Johnson, 200 F.3d 274, 280-81 (5th Cir. 2000). Here, the petitioner has not shown that any of the issues raised by his claims are subject to debate among jurists of reason, or that a procedural ruling was incorrect. In addition, the questions presented are not worthy of encouragement to proceed further. Petitioner has failed to make a sufficient showing to merit the issuance of a certificate of appealability. Accordingly, the findings of fact and conclusions of law of the magistrate judge are correct, and the report of the magistrate judge is ADOPTED. A final judgment will be entered in this case 2 in accordance with the magistrate judge’s recommendation. A certificate of appealability will not be issued. SIGNED this 26th day of January, 2016. ____________________________________ MICHAEL H. SCHNEIDER UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE 3

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