United States District Court, W.D. Michigan, Southern Division
ORDER ADOPTING REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
L. MALONEY UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
Strandberg, a state prisoner, filed a petition for habeas
relief under 28 U.S.C. § 2254. The magistrate judge
issued a report, recommending the petition be denied. (ECF
No. 17.) Strandberg filed objections. (ECF No. 18.)
being served with a report and recommendation (R&R)
issued by a magistrate judge, a party has fourteen days to
file written objections to the proposed findings and
recommendations. 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1); Fed.R.Civ.P.
72(b). A district court judge reviews de novo the portions of
the R&R to which objections have been filed. 28 U.S.C.
§ 636(b)(1); Fed.R.Civ.P. 72(b). Only those objections
that are specific are entitled to a de novo review under the
statute. Mira v. Marshall, 806 F.2d 636, 637 (6th
Cir. 1986) (per curiam) (holding the district court need not
provide de novo review where the objections are frivolous,
conclusive or too general because the burden is on the
parties to "pinpoint those portions of the
magistrate's report that the district court must
Court has reviewed Strandberg's objections. Generally,
the discussion of the relevant law in the R&R addresses
Stay. Strandberg does not object to the recommendation that
his motion to stay be denied.
Polygraph Evidence. Strandberg argues that the polygraph
evidence introduced at his trial could not be cured by an
instruction to the jury. To be clear, at trial, a witness
testified that Strandberg "was offered a
polygraph[.]" (ECF No. 12-6 PageID.734.) There was no
testimony about the results of a polygraph or even if
Strandberg accepted or declined the offer.
objection is overruled. The relevant law was summarized on
pages 12-14 of the R&R (PageID.1455-57). The state courts
resolved this issue as a state law evidentiary question. The
opinions cited by Strandberg are not in conflict with the
decision reached by the state courts. None of the decisions
cited by Strandberg address a set of facts similar to what
occurred at Strandberg's trial.
Vouching. Strandberg does not object to the portion of the
R&R that addresses his claim that the prosecutor
improperly vouched for or bolstered the victim's
False Testimony. Strandberg generally complains that a
detective presented false testimony about what was said
during Strandberg's recorded interview. Strandberg
asserts the prosecutor then used the false testimony in
closing, knowing the testimony was false. In his objection,
Strandberg does not identify the allegedly false testimony.
objection is overruled. First, this issue was addressed in
the state court proceedings, where it was resolved in a
manner consistent with clearly established federal law.
(R&R at 18 Page Id. 1461.) Second,
Strandberg's objection is too vague for the Court to
resolve. Even reading the petition, it is not clear about
which of the prosecutor's statements Strandberg
complains. The prosecutor did not refer to the recorded
interview as a confession; the prosecutor repeatedly stated
the opposite, that the statements were not a confession.
(R&R at 18 PageID.1461, quoting ECF No. 12-6 PageID.865.)
Mischaracterizing the Victim's Testimony. Strandberg
complains that the prosecutor mischaracterized the
victim's testimony. The dispute is over the phrase
objection is overruled. The magistrate judge concluded that
the prosecutor's argument was simply asking the jury to
draw fair inferences from the testimony, a conclusion wholly
supported by the transcript. Defense counsel raised this
issue in closing, arguing that the victim's testimony did
not make sense. The prosecutor then responded to defense
counsel's theory. The prosecutor did not mischaracterize
the victim's testimony, which can be found at ECF No.
Ineffective Assistance of Counsel. Strandberg acknowledges
this claim relies on his claim of prosecutorial misconduct.
Because the Court finds that Strandberg has not adequately
established a claim for prosecutorial misconduct,
Strandberg's claim for ...