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Pliler v. Ford

Supreme Court of the United States

April 26, 2004, Argued ; June 21, 2004, Decided

No. 03-221

Opinion

 [*227]   [**2444]  Justice Thomas delivered the opinion of the Court.

LEdHN[1A][] [1A] LEdHN[2A][] [2A] LEdHN[3A][] [3A] Under Rose v. Lundy, 455 U.S. 509, 71 L. Ed. 2d 379, 102 S. Ct. 1198 (1982), federal district courts must dismiss "mixed" habeas corpus petitions--those containing both unexhausted and exhausted claims. In this case, we decide whether the District Court erred by dismissing, pursuant to Rose, a pro se habeas petitioner's two habeas petitions without giving him two particular advisements. Because we hold that the District Court's failure to provide these warnings did not make the  [***346]  dismissals improper, we need not address the second question presented,  [****7]  whether respondent's subsequent untimely petitions relate back to his "improperly dismissed" initial petitions.

 [*228]  I

On April 19, 1997, five days before his 1-year statute of limitations under the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 (AEDPA), 110 Stat 1214, would have run, respondent signed and delivered to prison authorities two pro se federal habeas corpus petitions. The first petition related to respondent's conviction for, among other things, conspiring to murder John Loguercio and attempting to murder Loguercio's wife; the second related to his conviction for the first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit the murder of Thomas Weed. Because the petitions contained unexhausted claims, respondent also filed motions to stay the petitions so that he could return to state court to exhaust the unexhausted claims. The Magistrate Judge gave respondent three options: (1) The petitions could be dismissed without prejudice and respondent could refile after exhausting the unexhausted claims; (2) the unexhausted claims could be dismissed and respondent could proceed with only the exhausted claims; or (3) respondent could contest the Magistrate Judge's finding that some [****8]  of the claims had not been exhausted. App. 51-52; 81-82.

With respect to his petition in the Loguercio case, respondent chose the first option. With respect to the Weed case, respondent failed to respond to the Magistrate Judge. The District Court dismissed respondent's petitions without prejudice. In both cases, respondent proceeded by filing habeas corpus petitions in the California Supreme Court, which were both summarily denied. Respondent subsequently refiled his pro se habeas petitions in Federal District Court. The District Court, in both cases, dismissed the petitions with prejudice as untimely under AEDPA's 1-year statute of limitations, 28 USCS § 2244(d), and denied respondent's motions for a certificate of appealability (COA).  The Ninth Circuit consolidated respondent's motions for a COA, and then granted a COA on the question whether his federal habeas petitions were timely under § 2244(d). A divided panel  [*229]  concluded that both of respondent's initial federal habeas petitions were timely filed and held that his later petitions related back to the initial petitions. Ford v. Hubbard, 330 F.3d 1086, 1097 (2003).

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542 U.S. 225 *; 124 S. Ct. 2441 **; 159 L. Ed. 2d 338 ***; 2004 U.S. LEXIS 4384 ****; 72 U.S.L.W. 4523; 17 Fla. L. Weekly Fed. S 411

CHERYL K. PLILER, WARDEN, Petitioner v. RICHARD HERMAN FORD

Prior History:  [****1] ON WRIT OF CERTIORARI TO THE UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE NINTH CIRCUIT.

Ford v. Hubbard, 330 F.3d 1086, 2002 U.S. App. LEXIS 28118 (9th Cir. Cal., 2003)

Disposition: Vacated and remanded.

district court, exhausted, unexhausted, petitions, mixed, habeas petition, pro se, federal court, state court, statute of limitations, stay-and-abeyance, limitations period, advisements, options, proceedings, warnings, corpus, habeas petitioner, district judge, abeyance, motions, dismiss a petition, pro se litigant, recharacterization, calculation, equitable, refiling

Criminal Law & Procedure, Order & Timing of Petitions, Statute of Limitations, Antiterrorism & Effective Death Penalty Act, Procedural Defenses, Exhaustion of Remedies, General Overview, Mixed Petitions, Habeas Corpus, Procedure, Time Limitations, Pretrial Dismissals, Governments, Legislation, Time Limitations, Civil Procedure, Parties, Pro Se Litigants, Counsel, Right to Self-Representation, Courts, Judges, Trials, Defendant's Rights, Judicial Officers, Judges, Constitutional Law, The Judiciary, Attorneys, Filing of Petitions, Pleadings, Court Records