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Patterson v. Harrington

United States District Court, N.D. Illinois, Eastern Division

September 11, 2014

RICHARD HARRINGTON, Warden, Menard Correctional Center, Respondent.


ROBERT M. DOW, Jr., District Judge.

This matter is before the Court on Respondent Richard Harrington's motion to dismiss [9] Petitioner Jason Patterson's petition for a writ of habeas corpus [1] on the ground that the petition is time barred under the one-year statute of limitations that applies to federal habeas corpus petitions under the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act ("AEDPA"). For the reasons stated below, the Court grants Respondent's motion [9] and dismisses the habeas petition as untimely.

I. Background

In March 2004, in the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois, Petitioner Jason Patterson pleaded guilty to one count of first degree murder and one count of aggravated battery of a child. In exchange, the State dismissed three additional counts and agreed to a fifty-year sentencing cap. The factual basis for Petitioner's plea established that in August 1999, Petitioner beat a five-year-old to death and similarly battered her six-year-old brother. Upon his arrest, and after being advised of and waiving his Miranda rights, Petitioner admitted to police that he hit both kids with his belt. After confronted with the autopsy results, Petitioner admitted that he hit one of the children with an alphabet toy that police later recovered from his apartment.

Petitioner then gave a videotaped statement, in which he admitted striking both children with extension cords and his belt "for discipline purposes." On that particular evening, Petitioner beat the girl with his belt because she could not spell her last name. After the beating, she still did not spell it correctly, so he "shoved" the alphabet toy into her chest "at least twice." Petitioner demonstrated how he "shoved that board in her" and "how he hit her with the belt." Petitioner also struck her with his hand. He later left the apartment with his friends, smoked some marijuana, then returned to the apartment and slept. The next morning, after the girl began vomiting and complaining of stomach pain, he and the victim's mother took her to the hospital. The child died before she reached the hospital.

On May 7, 2004, the trial court sentenced Petitioner to 50 years of imprisonment. Petitioner neither timely moved to withdraw his plea nor timely filed a direct appeal.[1] In August 2004, Petitioner filed a motion seeking a free transcript of the guilty plea proceedings. The trial court denied that motion on October 20, 2004, and, on December 22, 2004, Petitioner filed a notice of appeal. The ensuing appeal, No. 1-04-3844, was dismissed for want of prosecution on August 3, 2005. Petitioner then filed a pro se petition for leave to appeal (PLA) to the Illinois Supreme Court. The Illinois Supreme Court denied leave to appeal on January 25, 2006. People v. Patterson, No. 101406, 844 N.E.2d 970 (Ill. 2006) (Table).

On July 13, 2006, Petitioner mailed a pro se postconviction petition pursuant to 725 ILCS 5/122-1, et seq. Appointed counsel subsequently filed a supplemental petition and an "addendum" to the supplemental petition. The state trial court dismissed the petitions on the State's motion, and the state appellate court affirmed. Petitioner's ensuing PLA was denied on September 26, 2012. According to Petitioner, he then filed a petition for certiorari with the United States Supreme Court in December 2012 and that petition was denied on March 4, 2013. On October 8, 2013, Petitioner mailed his 28 U.S.C. § 2254 petition from Menard Correctional Center. Respondent has moved to dismiss the petition as time-barred [7].

II. Analysis

The sole question raised in Respondent's motion is whether the petition should be dismissed as untimely under the one-year statute of limitations for § 2254 petitions set forth in 28 U.S.C. § 2244(d)(1). Section 2244(d)(1) states:

A 1-year period of limitation shall apply to an application for a writ of habeas corpus by a person in custody pursuant to a judgment of a State court. The limitation period shall run from the latest of -
(A) the date on which judgment became final by the conclusion of direct review or the expiration of the time for seeking such review;
(B) the date on which the impediment to filing an application created 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 the 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 ...

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