United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division
OPINION AND ORDER DENYING PETITION FOR WRIT OF HABEAS
CORPUS  AND DENYING CERTIFICATE OF APPEALABILITY
Stephen J. Murphy, III United States District Judge.
6, 2017, Petitioner Trahuan Robinson filed a petition for a
writ of habeas corpus. Petitioner challenges his convictions
for two counts of assault with intent to commit murder, one
count of assault with intent to do great bodily harm less
than murder, one count of first-degree home invasion, one
count of felon in possession of a firearm, one count of
injuring an animal, and one count of possession of a firearm
during the commission of a felony. ECF 9-39, PgID 1891.
Petitioner raises two claims: (1) he was denied his right to
a fair trial because the trial court improperly denied his
request for self-defense and defense-of-others instructions;
and (2) the trial court improperly allowed the prosecution to
amend the information after the prosecution rested. The Court
will address each claim below.
convictions arise from a dispute over a lost cell phone. On
October 29, 2012, Petitioner's niece, Emily Hickey,
attended a party at Blakeley Williams's home in Flint.
People v. Robinson, No. 327268, 2016 WL 6992160, at
*1 (Mich. Ct. App. Nov. 29, 2016). At some point, Hickey was
kicked out, but she thought she left her phone in the home.
Id. Police were called to the home but were unable
to locate the phone. ECF 9-30, PgID 881; ECF 9-31, PgID 1011.
The next afternoon, Hickey and her friend, Alanna Hamilton
returned to the home with Hickey's father, Jajuan
Robinson, and her uncle, Petitioner Trahuan Robinson. ECF
9-30, PgID 883. Jajuan Robinson and Petitioner forced their way
into the home and Jajuan Robinson began pistol-whipping
Williams. ECF 9-30, PgID 886; ECF 9-31, PgID 1015. Petitioner
pursued another man, Nigel Melton, into the kitchen. ECF
9-30, PgID 887-88. Melton released Williams' dog from the
basement. ECF 9-31, PgID 1015. The dog bit Petitioner's
arm, and Petitioner then shot the dog in the face and fired
shots at Williams, Melton, and a third man, Avontez Boone, as
they attempted to flee the home. ECF 9-30, PgID 888. Williams
and Melton were both shot once. ECF 9-30, PgID 888; ECF 9-31,
Robinson testified at his brother's trial pursuant to a
plea agreement. He testified that, when he knocked on the
front door of Williams' home, Williams answered the door
carrying a gun. ECF 9-36, PgID 1495. Jajuan Robinson tackled
Williams, wrestled the gun from him, and hit him with it
twice. Id. at 1496. He fired his weapon once, but
the bullet lodged in the wall. Id. at 1497-501.
Jajuan Robinson believed that his brother brought a .40 or
.45 caliber pistol with him to Williams' house. ECF 9-36,
defense presented no witnesses.
was tried before a jury in Genesee County Circuit Court and
was convicted of two counts of assault with intent to commit
murder, Mich. Comp. Laws § 750.83, one count of assault
with intent to do great bodily harm less than murder, Mich.
Comp. Laws § 750.84, one count of first-degree home
invasion, Mich. Comp. Laws § 750.110a(2), one count of
felon in possession of a firearm, Mich. Comp. Laws §
750.224f, one count of injuring an animal, Mich. Comp. Laws
§ 750.50b, and one count of possession of a firearm
during the commission of a felony, Mich. Comp. Laws §
750.227b. ECF 9-39, PgID 1891; People v. Robinson,
No. 327268, 2016 WL 6992160, at *1 (Mich. Ct. App. Nov. 29,
2016). The trial court sentenced Petitioner as a third
habitual offender to concurrent terms of 40 to 60 years'
for each assault with intent to murder conviction, 114
months' to 20 years' for the assault with intent to
do great bodily harm conviction, 14 months' to 15
years' for the injuring an animal conviction, and 2 to 10
years' for the felon-in-possession conviction.
Robinson, 2016 WL 6992160, at *1. Petitioner was
also sentenced to consecutive sentences of 117 months' to
20 years' for the home-invasion conviction, and 2
years' for the felony-firearm conviction. Id.
appealed to the Michigan Court of Appeals challenging his
convictions and sentences. The Michigan Court of Appeals
affirmed Petitioner's convictions, but remanded the case
to the trial court for a sentencing hearing pursuant to
People v. Lockridge, 498 Mich. 358 (2015).
Robinson, 2016 WL 6992160, at *5. Petitioner sought
leave to appeal in the Michigan Supreme Court, which denied
leave. People v. Robinson, 500 Mich. 1002 (2017). On
remand, the state trial court declined to re-sentence.
People v. Robinson, No. 13-034247-FC, (Genesee Co.
Cir. Ct. July 24, 2018).
then filed the pending petition, ECF 1, and raised two
grounds: (1) "the trial court erred and [Petitioner] was
denied his constitutional right to a fair trial because the
trial . . . court refused his request for instructions on
self-defense of others;" and (2) "the trial court
erred and Petitioner was denied a fair trial because the
trial court allowed . . . the prosecutor to amend the
Information after the prosecutor rested to change entirely
the elements on which the home invasion was based." ECF
1, PgID 5, 7, 15.
the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996
("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