United States District Court, D. Connecticut
ANTHONY J. SINCHAK, Petitioner,
WARDEN STRANGE, Respondent.
RULING ON MOTION FOR RECONSIDERATION
R. Underhill United States District Judge
petitioner, Anthony J. Sinchak, is currently confined at the
Cheshire Correctional Institution. In January 2000, he filed
this petition for writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
§ 2254 challenging his 1995 conviction for murder and
kidnapping. In July 2000, while his federal petition was
pending, the petitioner filed a habeas petition in the
Connecticut Superior Court for the Judicial District of
Hartford. See Sinchak v. Warden, No.
TSR-CV-000800827-S, 2007 WL 2081355, at *1 (Conn. Super. Ct.
June 29, 2007). The petitioner subsequently moved to amend
the petition filed in this action and also moved to stay this
action while he litigated his state habeas petition.
See Mot. Amend Pet., Doc. No. 16; Mot. Place
Petition Protected Suspension, Doc. No. 17.
January 8, 2001, the court granted the petitioner leave to
file an amended petition. See Ruling and Order, Doc.
No. 23. On August 30, 2001, the court granted the
petitioner’s motion to stay this action while he
litigated his claims in the state habeas petition. On April
24, 2003, the court dismissed the action without prejudice to
reopening after the petitioner exhausted his state remedies
as to the claims in his state habeas petition that he sought
to assert in this action.
28, 2003, the court vacated the judgment dismissing the case
without prejudice and stayed this action to allow the
petitioner to exhaust his available state remedies as to
claims that he had raised in the state habeas petition. The
court ordered the petitioner to file a written report within
thirty days of the date that he finished exhausting his state
remedies. See Notice, Doc. No. 49.
October 5, 2007, the petitioner informed the court that he
had filed a second state habeas petition and that he had
appealed both the dismissal of that petition and the denial
of the petition filed in 2000. See Status Report,
Doc. No. 56. On February 22, 2011, the Connecticut Appellate
Court dismissed the appeal of the trial court’s denial
of the state habeas petition filed in 2000. See Sinchak
v. Comm’r of Correction, 14 A.3d 348, 357 (2011).
On April 27, 2011, the Connecticut Supreme Court denied the
petition for certification to appeal from the decision of the
Connecticut Appellate Court. See Sinchak v. Comm’r
of Correction, 17 A.3d 1045 (2011).
February 22, 2011, the Connecticut Appellate Court reversed
and remanded the decision dismissing the 2007 state petition
as premature. See Sinchak v. Comm’r of
Correction, 14 A.3d 343, 348 (2011). The Appellate Court
instructed the trial court to appoint counsel for the
petitioner and to further proceed with the claims in the 2007
habeas petition. See id.
August 28, 2014, the trial court denied the 2007 habeas
petition. See Sinchak v. Warden, No. CV074001895,
2014 WL 4922252 (Conn. Super. Ct. Aug. 28, 2014). On October
23, 2015, the petitioner informed the court that the appeal
of the trial court’s decision remains pending at the
Connecticut Appellate Court. See Status Report, Doc.
27, 2011, the petitioner filed a motion in this action
seeking clarification as to whether the one-year statute of
limitations set forth in 28 U.S.C. § 2244(d)(1), and
applicable to habeas petitions filed pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
§ 2254, would be tolled while he pursued his claims in
state court. On March 20, 2012, the court granted the motion
for clarification and informed the petitioner that claims
raised in his habeas petition filed in this action on January
7, 2000 would not be barred by the statute of limitations.
Because the petitioner did not file a state habeas petition
within one year after the conclusion of the direct appeal of
his conviction to the Connecticut Supreme Court and the United
States Supreme Court had held that the filing of a federal
petition does not toll the limitations period, the court
concluded that any new claims asserted in the state habeas
petition filed in July 2000 would be barred by the one-year
statute of limitations. See Ruling and Order, Doc.
No. 71 (citing Duncan v. Walker, 533 U.S. 167
(2001)). The petitioner seeks reconsideration of the
court’s March 20, 2012 ruling granting the motion for
motion for reconsideration must be filed within fourteen days
of the filing of the order the party seeks to challenge.
See Rule 7(c), D. Conn. L. Civ. R. (“Motions
for Reconsideration shall be filed and served within fourteen
(14) days of the filing of the decision or order from which
relief is sought . . .”). The motion for
reconsideration is dated October 21, 2015, and was received
by the court on October 23, 2015. Thus, the motion was filed
more than three years after the ruling granting the motion
for clarification. Accordingly, it is untimely and is denied.
Motion for Reconsideration [Doc. No. 85] is
DENIED as untimely. To the extent that it is
necessary, the petitioner may make any tolling arguments with
regard to the claims in his petition after he has completed
the exhaustion of state remedies with respect to the claims
in his current state habeas petition.