Williams v. Schoeder
ORDER denying 4 Motion for Leave to Proceed in forma pauperis and DISMISSING this action for lack of jurisdiction. Signed by Judge William C Griesbach on 06/27/2011. (cc: all counsel, via US mail to Clyde Williams) (Griesbach, William)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF WISCONSIN
CLYDE B. WILLIAMS,
Case No. 11-C-0572
HON. BRUCE SCHOEDER,
Clyde Williams, a prisoner at Columbia Correctional Institution, has filed a self-styled
Petition of Mandamus in which he seeks to compel a state court judge release him from prison. In
light of the relief requested this action is actually a petition for a writ of habeas corpus. See Preiser
v. Rodriguez, 411 U.S. 475, 93 S.Ct. 1827, 36 L.Ed.2d 439 (1973) (holding that habeas corpus is
the exclusive remedy for state prisoner to effect release from custody). This action must be
dismissed for lack of jurisdiction because Williams has exhausted his ability to attack his conviction
under the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act (“AEDPA”), which generally affords
prisoners just one round of collateral review. See Rodriguez v. United States, 286 F.3d 972, 980
(7th Cir. 2002). Williams was convicted in Wisconsin state court of three counts of first-degree
sexual assault of a child. After unsuccessfully pursuing his state court direct appeal, he filed a
petition for habeas corpus in this Court which denied relief. Williams v. Bartow, 2005 WL
3435038, No. 05-C-89 (E.D. Wis. Dec 13, 2005). On March 20, 2007, the Seventh Circuit Court
of Appeals affirmed. See Williams v. Bartow, 481 F.3d 492 (7th Cir. 2007).
Regardless of the label, any subsequent motion attacking the prisoner's conviction must,
absent permission from the court of appeals to commence a second or successive collateral attack,
be dismissed. Melton v. United States, 359 F.3d 855, 857 (7th Cir. 2004). As the court explained
Prisoners cannot avoid the AEDPA's rules by inventive captioning. Any motion filed
in the district court that imposed the sentence, and substantively within the scope of
§ 2255 ¶ 1, is a motion under § 2255, no matter what title the prisoner plasters on
the cover. Call it a motion for a new trial, arrest of judgment, mandamus,
prohibition, coram nobis, coram vobis, audita querela, certiorari, capias, habeas
corpus, ejectment, quare impedit, bill of review, writ of error, or an application for
a Get-Out-of-Jail Card; the name makes no difference. It is substance that controls.
Id. (internal citations omitted). Thus, under the reasoning of Melton, which is equally applicable
to petitions attacking state court convictions, the present filing is actually a motion under § 2254.
As such this Court is required to dismiss the action for lack of jurisdiction because Williams has
not received permission from the Seventh Circuit to commence a second or successive collateral
Even if Williams’ suit could properly be classified as a mandamus action, dismissal for lack
of subject matter jurisdiction would be required. Williams’ target is a Wisconsin state court judge
and the issuance of a writ of mandamus directed to any such state employee is not within the power
granted to federal courts under mandamus. 28 U.S.C. §1361 (“The district courts shall have original
jurisdiction of any action in the nature of mandamus to compel an officer or employee of the United
States or any agency thereof to perform a duty owed to the plaintiff.”)
Accordingly this action is dismissed for lack of jurisdiction. The motion to proceed
in forma pauperis is denied.
SO ORDERED this
day of June, 2011.
s/ William C. Griesbach
William C. Griesbach
United States District Judge
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