United States District Court, D. Connecticut
MICHAEL A. YOUNG, Petitioner,
WARDEN CHAPDELAINE, et al. Respondents.
RULING ON PETITION FOR WRIT OF HABEAS CORPUS
Alvin W. Thompson, United States District Judge
The petitioner, Michael A. Young, is currently confined at the MacDougall-Walker Correctional Institution in Suffield, Connecticut. He brings this action pro se for a writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254 challenging his June 2015 conviction for operating a motor vehicle while under suspension. For the reasons that follow, the petition is being dismissed.
I. Procedural Background
On June 26, 2015, in State v. Young, Case No. MV13-0370552, the petitioner entered a plea of nolo contendere to one count of illegally operating a motor vehicle while under suspension in violation of Conn. Gen. Stat. § 14-215(c). See Pet. Writ Habeas Corpus at 2. On July 26, 2015, a judge imposed a sentence of thirty days of imprisonment to be served consecutively to the sentence the petitioner was already serving. See Id. at 89. The petitioner appealed the conviction and sentence. See Id. at 3.
On November 19, 2015, the Connecticut Appellate Court dismissed the appeal. See id.
The petitioner filed the present federal petition on January 8, 2016. The petition includes four grounds, each of which includes multiple claims.
II. Legal Standard
A prerequisite to habeas corpus relief under 28 U.S.C. § 2254 is the exhaustion of available state remedies. See O’Sullivan v. Boerckel, 526 U.S. 838, 842 (1999); 28 U.S.C. § 2254(b)(1)(A). The exhaustion requirement seeks to promote considerations of comity between the federal and state judicial systems. See Coleman v. Thompson; 501 U.S. 722, 731 (1991).
To satisfy the exhaustion requirement, a petitioner must present the essential factual and legal bases of his federal claim to each appropriate state court, including the highest state court capable of reviewing it, in order to give state courts a full and fair “opportunity to pass upon and correct alleged violations of its prisoners’ federal rights.” Duncan v. Henry, 513 U.S. 364, 365 (1995) (per curiam) (internal quotation marks and citation omitted). A federal claim has been “fairly present[ed] in each appropriate state court, including a state supreme court with powers of discretionary review, ” if it “alert[s] that court to the federal nature of the claim.” Baldwin v. Reese, 541 U.S. 27, 29 (2004) (internal parentheses and quotation marks omitted). A petitioner “does not fairly present a claim to a state court if that court must read beyond a petition or a brief . . . that does not alert it to the presence of a federal claim in order to find material . . . that does so.” Id. at 32.
Failure to exhaust may be excused only where “there is no opportunity to obtain redress in state court or if the corrective process is so clearly deficient to render futile any effort to obtain relief.” Duckworth v. Serrano, 454 U.S. 1, 3 (1981) (per curiam). A petitioner cannot, however, simply wait until appellate remedies no longer are available and argue that the claim is exhausted. See Galdamez v. Keane, 394 F.3d 68, 73-74 (2d Cir.), cert. denied, 544 U.S. 1025 (2005).
The petitioner raises multiple grounds for relief, including lack of jurisdiction, malicious prosecution, illegal sentence, unlawful arrest, ineffective assistance of counsel, failure to disclose exonerating evidence, destruction of evidence and actual innocence. Although the petitioner filed an appeal of his conviction with the Connecticut Appellate Court, he does not set forth the grounds raised in the appeal. Thus, it is unclear whether the petitioner asserted the grounds raised in the present petition in his appeal to the Connecticut Appellate Court.
On November 19, 2015, the Appellate Court dismissed the appeal on procedural grounds for failure to submit a preliminary statement of issues, docketing statement, certificate regarding a transcript and court reporter’s acknowledgment form regarding delivery of a transcript within a specified time. See Id. at 94. The petitioner did not file a petition for certification in the Connecticut Supreme Court seeking to appeal the dismissal of the Connecticut Appellate Court. See Id. at 3.
The petitioner contends that, in addition to filing an appeal of his conviction and sentence, he filed a complaint with the Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities. See Id. at 5. He has not been ...