United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division
OPINION AND ORDER DENYING PETITION FOR WRIT OF HABEAS
CORPUS AND DENYING CERTIFICATE OF APPEALABILITY
F. Cox U.S. District Judge.
Kirk Bernard Henden has filed a pro se petition for
a writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254.
Petitioner is incarcerated at the Ionia Maximum Correctional
Facility in Ionia, Michigan. He challenges his 2013
conviction in Manistee County Circuit Court for assault of a
prison employee. It is apparent from the face of the petition
that habeas relief is not warranted. Therefore, the Court
summarily dismisses the petition.
the filing of a habeas corpus petition, the Court must
promptly examine the petition to determine "if it
plainly appears from the face of the petition and any
exhibits annexed to it that the petitioner is not entitled to
relief." Rule 4, Rules Governing Section 2254 cases. If
the Court determines that the petitioner is not entitled to
relief, the court shall summarily dismiss the petition.
McFarlandv. Scott, 512 U.S. 849, 856 (1994)
("Federal courts are authorized to dismiss summarily any
habeas petition that appears legally insufficient on its
face"). The habeas petition does not present grounds
which may establish the violation of a federal constitutional
right. The petition will be dismissed.
of this case is governed by the Antiterrorism and Effective
Death Penalty Act of 1996 ("AEDPA"). Under the
AEDPA, a state prisoner is entitled to a writ of habeas
corpus only if he can show that the state court's
adjudication of his claims:
(1) resulted in a decision that was contrary to, or involved
an unreasonable application of, clearly established Federal
law, as determined by the Supreme Court of the United States;
(2) resulted in a decision that was based on an unreasonable
determination of the facts in light of the evidence presented
in the State court proceeding.
28 U.S.C. § 2254(d).
decision of a state court is "contrary to" clearly
established federal law if the state court arrives at a
conclusion opposite to that reached by the Supreme Court on a
question of law, or if the state court decides a case
differently than the Supreme Court has on a set of materially
indistinguishable facts. Williams v. Taylor, 529
U.S. 362, 405 (2000). An "unreasonable application"
occurs when "a state court decision unreasonably applies
the law of [the Supreme Court] to the facts of a
prisoner's case." Id. at 408. "[A]
federal habeas court may not issue the writ simply because
that court concludes in its independent judgment that the
relevant state-court decision applied clearly established
federal law erroneously or incorrectly." Id. at
411. "[A] state court's determination that a claim
lacks merit precludes federal habeas relief so long as
'fairminded jurists could disagree' on the
correctness of the state court's decision."
Harrington v. Richter, 562 U.S. 86, 101 (2011). To
obtain habeas relief in federal court, a state prisoner is
required to show that the state court's rejection of his
claim "was so lacking in justification that there was an
error well understood and comprehended in existing law beyond
any possibility for fairminded disagreement."
Id. at 103.
argues that the Manistee County Circuit Court lacked subject
matter jurisdiction over his case because the statute under
which he was convicted lacked an Enacting Clause or title, as
required by the Michigan Constitution. This claim is not
cognizable on federal habeas review.
well established that '"federal habeas corpus relief
does not lie for errors of state law.'" Estelle
v. McGuire, 502 U.S. 62, 67 (1991), (quoting Lewis
v. Jeffers, 497 U.S. 764, 780 (1990)). The determination
of whether a particular state court is vested with
jurisdiction under state law and is the proper venue to hear
a criminal case is a "function of the state courts, not
the federal judiciary." Wills v. Egeler, 532
F.2d 1058, 1059 (6th Cir. 1976); see also Strunk v.
Martin, 27 F.App'x 473, 475 (6th Cir. 2001).
Petitioner's claim that the Michigan courts lacked
jurisdiction over his criminal case rests only on alleged
violations of the Michigan Constitution. A habeas petitioner
is not entitled to habeas relief based upon an alleged
violation of the Michigan Constitution. See Hudson v.
Berghuis, 174 F.App'x 948, 952, n. 1 (6th Cir.
2006). Federal due process does not require state officials
to follow their own procedural statutes and rules.
Sweeton v. Brown, 27 F.3d 1162, 1165 (6th Cir.
1994). The petition fails to allege the violation of the
Constitution and relief is denied.
reasons stated above, Petitioner's petition for a writ of
habeas corpus is DISMISSED. Furthermore, reasonable jurists
would not debate the Court's assessment of
Petitioner's claims, nor conclude that the issues deserve
encouragement to proceed further. The Court therefore
DECLINES to grant a certificate of appealability under 28
U.S.C. § 2253(c)(2). See Slack v. McDaniel, 529
U.S. 473, 484 (2000). However, if Petitioner chooses to
appeal the ...