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Erving v. Pfister

United States District Court, S.D. Illinois

July 23, 2015

JULIUS D. ERVING, Petitioner,
v.
WARDEN RANDY PFISTER, Respondent.

MEMORANDUM and ORDER

DAVID R. HERNDON, District Judge.

Julius D. Erving is an inmate in the custody of the Illinois Department of Corrections. He filed a petition for habeas relief pursuant to §2254 (Doc. 1). As construed on preliminary review, the petition alleges that prison disciplinary proceedings which resulted in the loss of good conduct credit violated petitioner's Fourteenth Amendment Due Process rights (Doc. 6).

This matter is now before the Court on respondent's Motion to Dismiss for Failure to Exhaust State Court Remedies (Doc. 11). Petitioner filed a response to the motion (Doc. 14). In addition, petitioner filed a number of exhibits (Doc. 19).

Relevant Facts

According to the petition, Erving pleaded guilty to two counts of "unlawful delivery of cocaine substance" in Stephenson County, Illinois, in 2013. He was sentenced to four years imprisonment.

Erving has been issued a number of disciplinary tickets while in prison, which have resulted in the revocation of good conduct credit. Petitioner's response to the motion indicates that he lost nine months of good conduct time (Doc. 14). He alleges that the various disciplinary proceedings were constitutionally defective in a number of respects, including that he was not given notice of hearings, he was not allowed to present a defense, and there was no evidence to support the charges.

Applicable Legal Standards

1. Law Applicable to §2254 Petition

This habeas petition is subject to the provisions of the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act, known as the AEDPA. "The Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 modified a federal habeas court's role in reviewing state prisoner applications in order to prevent federal habeas retrials' and to ensure that state-court convictions are given effect to the extent possible under law." Bell v. Cone, 122 S.Ct. 1843, 1849 (2002).

Habeas is not simply another round of appellate review of a state court decision. 28 U.S.C. §2254(d) restricts habeas relief to cases wherein the state court determination "resulted in a decision that was contrary to, or involved an unreasonable application of, clearly established federal law, as determined by the Supreme Court of the United States" or "a decision that was based on an unreasonable determination of the facts in light of the evidence presented in the State court proceeding."

2. The Exhaustion Requirement

28 U.S.C.A. § 2254(b)(1) requires that state judicial remedies be exhausted before a federal court can grant habeas relief:

An application for a writ of habeas corpus on behalf of a person in custody pursuant to the judgment of a State court shall not ...

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