United States District Court, W.D. Michigan, Southern Division
L. Maloney United States District Judge
a habeas corpus action brought by a state prisoner under 28
U.S.C. § 2254. Promptly after the filing of a petition
for habeas corpus, the Court must undertake a preliminary
review of the petition to determine whether "it plainly
appears from the face of the petition and any exhibits
annexed to it that the petitioner is not entitled to relief
in the district court." Rule 4, Rules Governing §
2254 Cases; see 28 U.S.C. § 2243. If so, the
petition must be summarily dismissed. Rule 4; see Allen
v. Perini, 424 F.2d 134, 141 (6th Cir. 1970) (district
court has the duty to "screen out" petitions that
lack merit on their face). A dismissal under Rule 4 includes
those petitions which raise legally frivolous claims, as well
as those containing factual allegations that are palpably
incredible or false. Carson v. Burke, 178 F.3d 434,
436-37 (6th Cir. 1999). After undertaking the review required
by Rule 4, the Court concludes that the petition must be
dismissed because it fails to raise a meritorious federal
Kendall Williams-Johnson is incarcerated with the Michigan
Department of Corrections at the Michigan Reformatory (RMI)
in Ionia, Michigan. Petitioner pleaded guilty in the
Kalamazoo County Circuit Court to one count of assault with
intent to rob while armed, Mich. Comp. Laws § 750.89,
and one count of first-degree home invasion, Mich. Comp. Laws
§ 750.110a(2). On June 8, 2015, the court sentenced
Petitioner to respective prison terms of 12 to 30 years and 5
years, 6 months to 20 years.
March 14, 2018, Petitioner filed his habeas corpus petition.
Under Sixth Circuit precedent, the application is deemed
filed when handed to prison authorities for mailing to the
federal court. Cook v. Stegall, 295 F.3d 517, 521
(6th Cir. 2002). Petitioner placed his petition in the prison
mailing system on March 14, 2018. (Pet, ECF No. 1, PageJD.
petition raises two grounds for relief, as follows:
I. Entitled to correction of invalid sentence and
resentencing because the scoring of OV4 at 10 points was
II. Invalid scoring of OV19 at 10 points was inaccurate and
not based on a preponderance of the evidence that I failed to
comply with the police[.]
(Pet., ECF No.l, PageID.6-7.)
raised the same two grounds in his applications for leave to
appeal to the Michigan Court of Appeals and the Michigan
Supreme Court. Those courts denied leave to appeal on
December 4, 2015, and June 7, 2017.
action is governed by the Antiterrorism and Effective Death
Penalty Act of 1996, Pub. L. 104-132, 110 Stat. 1214 (AEDPA).
The AEDPA "prevents federal habeas
'retrials'" and ensures that state court
convictions are given effect to the extent possible under the
law. Bell v. Cone, 535 U.S. 685, 693-94 (2002). An
application for writ of habeas corpus on behalf of a person
who is incarcerated pursuant to a state conviction cannot be
granted with respect to any claim that was adjudicated on the
merits in state court unless the adjudication: "(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; or
(2) resulted in a decision that was based upon an
unreasonable determination of the facts in light of the
evidence presented in the state court proceeding." 28
U.S.C. § 2254(d). This standard is "intentionally
difficult to meet." Woods v. Donald, 575
U.S.__, 135 S.Ct. 1372');">135 S.Ct. 1372, 1376 (2015) (internal quotation
AEDPA limits the source of law to cases decided by the United
States Supreme Court. 28 U.S.C. § 2254(d). This Court
may consider only the "clearly established"
holdings, and not the dicta, of the Supreme Court.
Williams v. Taylor,529 U.S. 362, 412 (2000);
Bailey v. Mitchell,271 F.3d 652, 655 (6th Cir.
2001). In determining whether federal law is clearly
established, the Court may not consider the decisions of
lower federal courts. Lopez v. Smith,135 S.Ct. 1, 3
(2014); Bailey, 271 F.3d at 655. Moreover,
"clearly established Federal law" does not include
decisions of the Supreme Court announced after the last
adjudication of the merits in state court. Greene v.
Fisher,565 U.S. 34 (2011). Thus, the inquiry is limited
to an examination of the legal landscape as it would have
appeared to the ...