United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division
OPINION AND ORDER GRANTING THE MOTION TO LIFT THE
ABEYANCE ON PETITIONER'S PENDING MOTIONS [Dkt. # 64],
DENYING THE MOTION TO DISQUALIFY THE JUDGE [Dkt. # 58] AND
THE MOTION FOR RELIEF FROM JUDGMENT [Dkt # 59], AND DENYING A
CERTIFICATE OF APPEALABILITY AND LEAVE TO APPEAL IN FORMA
HONORABLE DENISE PAGE HOOD CHIEF UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Court summarily denied the petition for writ of habeas corpus
filed pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254, on the ground that
the original and amended habeas petitions were barred by the
statute of limitations contained within 28 U.S.C. §
2244(d)(1). See Quatrine v. Berghuis, No. 2014 WL
793626 (E.D. Mich. Feb. 27, 2014).
United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit affirmed
the dismissal of the petition for writ of habeas corpus.
Quatrine v. Berghuis, No. 14-1323, 2016 WL 1457878
(6th Cir. Apr. 12, 2016).
October 21, 2016, petitioner filed a petition for writ of
certiorari. While this petition was pending, petitioner filed
a Rule 60(b) motion and a motion to disqualify this Court
from hearing the case. This Court held the motions in
abeyance pending a decision from the See United States
Supreme Court. On January 9, 2017, the Supreme Court denied
petitioner a writ of certiorari. Quatrine v.
Berghuis, No. 16-6723, 2017 WL 69504 (U.S. Jan. 9,
has now filed a motion to lift the stay and to adjudicate his
pending motions. The Court GRANTS the motion to lift the stay
and abeyance. The Court DENIES the motion to disqualify and
the Rule 60(b) motion.
filed a motion to disqualify this Court itself from hearing
the case, claiming judicial bias on the part of the Court.
U.S.C. § 455 (a) provides that “[a]ny justice,
judge, or magistrate of the United States shall disqualify
himself [or herself] in any proceeding in which his [or her]
impartiality might reasonably be questioned.” Under 28
U.S.C. § 455(a), a judge must recuse himself or herself
“‘if a reasonable, objective person, knowing all
of the circumstances, would have questioned the judge's
impartiality.'” United States v. Sammons,
918 F.2d 592, 599 (6th Cir.1990)(quoting Hughes v. United
States, 899 F.2d 1495, 1501 (6th Cir.1990)). The Supreme
Court has held that under § 455(a), opinions formed by
judges on the basis of facts introduced or events occurring
“in the course of current proceedings, or of prior
proceedings, do not constitute bias or partiality”
unless they display “such a high degree of favoritism
or antagonism as to make fair judgment impossible.”
Liteky v. United States, 510 U.S. 540, 555 (1994).
To state a claim that a judge is biased, a defendant must
show either actual bias or the appearance of bias creating a
conclusive presumption of actual bias. United States v.
Lowe, 106 F.3d 1498, 1504 (6th Cir. 1997). Adverse
rulings are not themselves sufficient to establish bias or
prejudice which will disqualify a judge. See Hence v.
Smith, 49 F.Supp.2d 547, 549 (E.D. Mich. 1999). A habeas
petitioner's “unsupported accusations”and
“unfounded surmise” of bias on the part of a
federal judge presiding over his or her habeas petition are
insufficient to establish grounds for disqualification of
that judge from presiding over the case. See Bates v.
Grant, 98 F. App'x. 11, 15 (1st Cir. 2004).
only evidence petitioner offers of judicial bias is that this
Court found petitioner's habeas application to be
time-barred and dismissed his case on that basis. Adverse
rulings by a judge do not establish judicial bias that would
support judicial disqualification. Petitioner's motion to
disqualify is DENIED.
has filed a Rule 60(b) motion for relief from judgment,
claiming that both this Court and the Sixth Circuit erred in
dismissing his habeas petition as time-barred, in light of
the Sixth Circuit's subsequent decision in another habeas
case. Petitioner points to the recent case of Holbrook v.
Curtin, 833 F.3d 612, 619 (6th Cir. 2016), in which the
Sixth Circuit held that a habeas petitioner is entitled to
tolling of the limitations period under 28 U.S.C. §
2244(d)(2) for the time that he or she could have appealed
the denial of a state post-conviction motion, even if the
petitioner never filed an appeal. This Court and the Sixth
Circuit, in reliance on the U.S. Supreme Court case of
Evans v. Chavis, 546 U.S. 189, 191 (2006), ruled
that the tolling of the limitations period ended when the
state trial court denied petitioner's two post-conviction
motions because petitioner never filed any appeal from the
denial of these motions. Petitioner seeks relief from
judgment based on the Sixth Circuit's decision in
Holbrook, arguing that his petition is timely if
this Court or the Sixth Circuit were to toll the limitations
period for the time period that petitioner could have
appealed the denial of his post-conviction motions, even
though he did not do so.
motion for relief from judgment can be granted for the
(1) mistake, inadvertence, surprise, or excusable neglect;
(2) newly discovered evidence which by due diligence could
not have been discovered in time to move for a new trial
under Rule 59(b);
(3) fraud (whether heretofore denominated intrinsic or
extrinsic), misrepresentation, or other misconduct ...