United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
se Petitioner Dwayne J. Middleton filed this Petition
for a Writ of Habeas Corpus (Doc. 1), asserting several due
process claims in relation to his then pending criminal
action in Franklin County, Illinois (Case No. 2017-CF-62). At
the time the Petition was filed, Petitioner was being
detained in the Franklin County Jail awaiting trial on
burglary charges. Shortly after filing this Petition, his
case was called to trial and Petitioner was convicted. As a
result, Petitioner is presently housed at the Sheridan
Correctional Center, serving a five year sentence on his
burglary conviction. For the reasons set forth below, the
Petition is dismissed without prejudice for failure to
exhaust state court remedies.
Franklin County Court docket indicates that Petitioner was
charged with burglary in February 2017 and entered a plea of
not guilty. On April 7, 2017, Petitioner filed the instant
§ 2254 Petition alleging due process violations in
connection with his then pending criminal trial. In
connection with these claims, Petitioner seeks immediate or
“speedier” release. The Petition indicates that
Petitioner has not sought state court relief on any level. On
April 27, 2017, Petitioner was adjudicated guilty and
sentenced to 5 years' imprisonment. Petitioner is
presently in IDOC custody and is housed at Sheridan
petitioner who has been tried and convicted, and who
therefore is “in custody pursuant to the judgment of a
State court” must challenge his conviction or sentence
under 28 U.S.C. § 2254. See Preiser v.
Rodriguez, 411 U.S. 475, 500, 93 S.Ct. 1827, 36 L.Ed.2d
439 (1973). A pretrial detainee being held at the county
jail, however, is not “in custody pursuant to the
judgment of a State court.” Pretrial detainees must
therefore pursue habeas relief under § 2241. See
Braden v. 30th Judicial Cir. Ct. of Kentucky, 410 U.S.
484, 488 (1973); Jacobs v. McCaughtry, 251 F.3d 596,
597-98 (7th Cir. 2001). At the time he filed this Petition,
Petitioner was in pretrial custody, and had not yet been
convicted of any charge. Shortly after the Petition was
filed, he was convicted. He is now in custody pursuant to
that judgment of conviction.
U.S.C. § 2254 requires petitioners to exhaust state
court remedies prior to seeking federal habeas corpus relief.
See Baldwin v. Reese, 541 U.S. 27, 124 S.Ct. 1347,
158 L.Ed.2d 64 (2004) (§ 2254 requires exhaustion of
state court remedies). Although pretrial detainees in state
court pursuing relief under § 2241 are not subject to
the statutory requirement of exhaustion of remedies,
“federal courts nevertheless may require, as a matter
of comity, that such detainees exhaust all avenues of state
relief before seeking the writ.” United States v.
Castor, 937 F.2d 293, 296-97 (7th Cir. 1991).
exhaustion requirement promotes comity by affording the state
courts the first opportunity to address and correct
violations of their prisoners' federal constitutional
rights. O' Sullivan v. Boerckel, 526 U.S. 838,
844-45 (1999); Perruquet v. Briley, 390 F.3d 505. 513-14 (7th
Cir. 2004). For that opportunity to be meaningful, the
petitioner must “fairly present” his federal
constitutional claims in one complete round of state review.
Boerckel, 526 U.S. at 845. 848. To do so, the
petitioner must “present both the operative facts and
the legal principles that control each claim” at each
level of state review. Stevens v. McBride, 489 F.3d
883. 894 (7th Cir. 2007) (citation omitted). This includes
presenting the claim in a petition for discretionary review
with the Illinois Supreme Court. Boerckel, 526 U.S.
case, Petitioner has already been convicted. The relief
Petitioner seeks (release from prison) would require
overturning that conviction. Therefore, Petitioner's due
process challenges are an attack on his state court judgment.
Consequently, he must give the State of Illinois an
opportunity to address his claim before bringing it to
federal court. It is clear from the Petition that none of the
potential grounds for habeas relief has yet been presented to
the Illinois state courts for resolution. This Court cannot
review the merits of this claim, under § 2241 or §
2254 unless and until Petitioner exhausts his state court
the Petition shall be dismissed without prejudice to the
claims being refiled, if necessary, after Petitioner has
fully exhausted his claims in the state courts.
the foregoing reasons, the Petition for a Writ of Habeas
Corpus (Doc. 1) is dismissed without prejudice for failure to
exhaust state court remedies pursuant to Rule 4 of the Rules
Governing Section 2254 Cases.
Petitioner desire to appeal this Court's ruling, he must
first secure a certificate of appealability, either from this
Court or from the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals.
See Fed. R. App. P. 22(b); see also 28
U.S.C. § 2253(c)(1). Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2253,
a certificate of appealability may issue “only if the
applicant has made a substantial showing of the denial of a
requirement has been interpreted by the Supreme Court to mean
that an applicant must show that “reasonable jurists
would find the district court's assessment of the
constitutional claims debatable or wrong.” Slack v.
McDaniel, 529 U.S. 473, 484 (2000). While a Petitioner
need not show that his appeal will succeed, Miller-El v.
Cockrell, 537 U.S. 322, 337 (2003), he must show
“something more than the absence of frivolity” or
the existence of mere “good faith” on his part.
Id. at 338 (citation omitted). If the district court
denies the request, a petitioner may request that a circuit
judge issue the certificate. See Fed. R. App. P.
reasons detailed above, the Court has determined that
Petitioner is not entitled to relief at this time because he
has yet to exhaust his state court remedies. Furthermore, the
Court finds no basis for a determination that its decision is
debatable or incorrect. Thus, Petitioner has not ...