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Wright v. Williams

United States District Court, S.D. Georgia, Waycross Division

May 8, 2017

GEODONALD WRIGHT, Petitioner,
v.
WARDEN DOUG WILLIAMS, Respondent.

          ORDER AND MAGISTRATE JUDGE'S REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION

          R. STAN BAKER UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         Petitioner Geodonald Wright (“Wright”), who is currently incarcerated at Smith State Prison in Glennville, Georgia, filed a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254 challenging his conviction and sentence obtained in the Charlton County, Georgia, Superior Court. (Doc. 1.) Respondent filed an Answer-Response and a Motion to Dismiss. (Docs. 10, 11.) Wright filed a Response to the Motion to Dismiss. (Doc. 21.) For the reasons which follow, I RECOMMEND the Court GRANT Respondent's Motion, DISMISS Wright's Petition, DIRECT the Clerk of Court to CLOSE this case, and DENY Wright in forma pauperis status on appeal and a Certificate of Appealability.

         BACKGROUND

         After a jury trial in Charlton County Superior Court, Wright was convicted of armed robbery, four counts of kidnapping, five counts of aggravated assault, possession of a firearm during commission of a crime, and two counts of influencing a witness. (Doc. 12-1.) The Georgia Court of Appeals affirmed Wright's convictions on February 6, 2006. Wright v. State, 627 S.E.2d 116 (Ga.Ct.App. 2006). Wright did not petition for certiorari in the Georgia Supreme Court. (Doc. 1, p. 2.)

         Wright filed an application for writ of habeas corpus in the Telfair County Superior Court on May 8, 2009. (Doc. 12-2.) The Telfair County Superior Court denied Wright's application by order on February 1, 2011. (Doc. 12-3.) The Georgia Supreme Court dismissed Wright's application for a certificate of probable cause to appeal the denial of his state habeas corpus petition on March 5, 2012. (Doc. 12-4.) Wright executed his Section 2254 Petition on April 20, 2016, and it was filed in this Court on June 2, 2016. (Doc. 1.)

         DISCUSSION

         In his Petition, Wright alleges that his trial counsel rendered ineffective assistance because he failed to file an appeal and raised a frivolous claim in the habeas proceeding. (Doc. 1, p. 5.) Additionally, Wright claims that the indictment is jurisdictionally defective. (Id. at p. 8.)

         Respondent contends Wright untimely filed his Section 2254 Petition because he did not file it within one year of his Charlton County conviction being “final”. (Doc. 11-1, p. 2.) Respondent also argues that Wright is not entitled to equitable tolling of the applicable statute of limitations period. (Id. at pp. 4-5.) Wright filed a Response to the Motion to Dismiss arguing that the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals' recent decision in Overstreet v. Warden, 811 F.3d 1283 (11th Cir. 2016), retroactively extended the period in which Wright could timely file a Section 2254 Petition. (Doc. 21, pp. 1-2.)

         I. Whether Wright Timely Filed his Petition

         A petitioner seeking to file a federal habeas petition has one year within which to file their petition. 28 U.S.C. § 2244(d)(1). The statute of limitations period shall run from the latest of four possible dates:

(A) the date on which the judgment of conviction becomes final by the conclusion of direct review or the expiration of time for seeking such review;
(B) the date on which the impediment to filing an application by State action in violation of the Constitution or laws of the United States is removed, if the applicant was prevented from filing by such State action;
(C) the date on which the constitutional right asserted was initially recognized by the Supreme Court, if that right has been newly recognized by the Supreme Court and made retroactively applicable to cases on collateral review; or
(D) the date on which the factual predicate of the claim or claims presented could have been discovered through the ...

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