IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF ILLINOIS EASTERN DIVISION
March 12, 2012
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA EX REL. TREMAYNE CORA #B79855, PETITIONER,
MARCUS HARDY, RESPONDENT.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: Milton I. Shadur Senior United States District Judge
As soon as this Court received the self-prepared Petition for Writ of
Habeas Corpus ("Petition") filed by Tremayne Cora ("Cora"), it
conducted a preliminary review of that presentation in accordance with
Rule 4 of the Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases in the United States
District Courts ("Section 2254 Rules"). That review revealed that a
threshold look at the Petition's timeliness was obviously called
for--as this Court's January 5, 2012 memorandum order pointed out,
Cora's December 2, 2002 post-conviction petition in the state court
was said to have taken fully 6-1/2 years (until May 21, 2009) to have
reached the dismissal stage. After making a number of unsuccessful
efforts to reach Cora's post-conviction attorney Lee Boyd, Jr.
("Boyd") to obtain some informed input in that respect,*fn1
this Court perforce had to look instead to the Attorney
General's office for such enlightenment.
Assistant Attorney General David Iskowich has just submitted a thorough memorandum, replete with appropriate attachments, that explains the timeliness of the Petition under 28 U.S.C. §2244(d)(1) and (2). That makes it necessary to address the substantive sufficiency of the Petition, as to which this Court turns to the Attorney General's office for an answer, to be filed on or before April 16, 2012.*fn2
One matter remains for discussion: Cora's Motion for Appointment of Counsel ("Motion"), which was tendered with the Petition. Although Cora has presented an adequate showing of his financial inability to retain counsel, his submission is lacking an essential ingredient required by our Court of Appeals--a statement as to his efforts to obtain counsel on his own. As and when that is provided, this Court will be in a position to consider the Motion. Cora has suffered no harm by reason of any delay in that respect, for Section 2254 Rule 5(e) specifies that any reply that may be needed from Cora necessarily follows the respondent's answer called for earlier in this memorandum order.