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Bullock v. Jones

United States District Court, M.D. Alabama, Northern Division

May 27, 2018

MAURICE BULLOCK, # 189070, Petitioner,
v.
KENNETH JONES, et al., Respondents.

          RECOMMENDATION OF THE MAGISTRATE JUDGE I. INTRODUCTION

          Susan Russ Walker United States Magistrate Judge

         This case is before the court on a pro se petition for writ of habeas corpus under 28 U.S.C. § 2254 filed by state inmate Maurice Bullock (“Bullock”) on June 21, 2016. Doc. No. 1.[1] Bullock challenges his 1996 murder conviction and life sentence entered in the Circuit Court of Barbour County, Alabama. In conclusory fashion, Bullock asserts that the trial court lacked jurisdiction because he is not guilty of the crime for which he was convicted and his sentence was illegal. Doc. No. 1 at 2-3; Doc. No. 1-1 at 1-2. The respondents answer that Bullock's petition is time-barred by the one-year federal limitation period for § 2254 petitions. Doc. No. 6. After reviewing the pleadings and other submissions by the parties, the court concludes that no evidentiary hearing is required and that Bullock's petition should be denied as untimely.

         II. DISCUSSION

         A. AEDPA's One-Year Limitation Period

         Title 28 U.S.C. § 2244(d) of the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 (“AEDPA”) provides the statute of limitations for § 2254 petitions and states:

(1) A 1-year period of limitation shall apply to an application for a writ of habeas corpus by a person in custody pursuant to the judgment of a State court. The limitation period shall run from the latest of-
(A) the date on which the 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 the exercise of due diligence.
(2) The time during which a properly filed application for State post-conviction or other collateral review with respect to the pertinent judgment or claim is pending shall not be counted toward any period of limitation under this subsection.

28 U.S.C. § 2244(d).

         1. Bullock's State Court Proceedings

         On September 5, 1996, a Barbour County jury found Bullock guilty of murder. Doc. No. 6-1 at 15. On September 13, 1996, the trial court sentenced Bullock to life imprisonment. Id. at 17. Bullock appealed, and on April 18, 1997, the Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals issued an opinion affirming his conviction and sentence.[2]Bullock v. ...


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