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Boyd v. Nash

United States District Court, S.D. Mississippi, Northern Division

October 18, 2017

ROBERT DESHAWN BOYD PETITIONER
v.
WARDEN NASH RESPONDENT

          ORDER

          Daniel P. Jordan III UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         Petitioner Robert Deshawn Boyd asks the Court to re-open this case to consider his untimely Objection [17] to the previously adopted Report and Recommendation [14]. While the Court will grant Boyd an extension and consider his Objection, it does not change the finding that his Petition is successive. Therefore, Boyd's Petition for Habeas Corpus [1] remains dismissed.

         I. Facts

         In 2009, Robert Deshawn Boyd pleaded guilty in federal court to possession with intent to distribute crack cocaine while on parole for multiple state-court crimes. Based upon his plea, Boyd was sentenced to a term of 10-years imprisonment and sent to the Federal Correctional Complex in Yazoo City, Mississippi. Further, as a result of his plea, the Kentucky Parole Board issued a parole-violator warrant and ultimately a writ of detainer against Boyd for breaching the terms of his parole.

         Boyd took issue with the detainer, so on April 25, 2016, he filed a petition seeking habeas relief under 28 U.S.C. § 2254 in the Western District of Kentucky (hereinafter “Boyd I”). In that petition, Boyd alleged that the Kentucky Parole Board's delay in holding a parole-violation hearing infringed his constitutional rights by: (1) preventing him from participating in federal-prison-rehabilitation programs; and (2) prejudicing his ability to defend himself in the parole- violation hearing. See Def.'s Mot., Ex. 5 [10-5] at 25 (Petition in Boyd I).[1] As relief, Boyd requested either an immediate parole-revocation hearing in state court or, in the alternative, the dismissal of the writ of detainer. Id. at 22. Significantly, Boyd did not seek habeas relief from the Federal Bureau of Prisons (“BOP”) regarding the rehabilitation programs.

         On December 5, 2016, Boyd filed a second habeas petition [1], precipitating the instant case, this time under 28 U.S.C. § 2241 in this Court (hereinafter “Boyd II”). In it, he raised the same claims as in the § 2254 petition filed in the Kentucky district court. Boyd also requested the same remedies as those requested in the § 2254 petition: an immediate parole-revocation hearing in state court or the dismissal of the writ of detainer. See Pet. [1] at 5.

         Thereafter, on March 22, 2017, the Kentucky district court dismissed the § 2254 petition in Boyd I with prejudice. While the Kentucky district court discussed the possibility of dismissing the case on procedural grounds, the court nevertheless decided the petition on the merits, holding that Boyd's claims raised no constitutional interests. See Def.'s Mot., Ex. 8 [10-8] at 7 (R&R in Boyd I).[2]

         Based upon the Kentucky district court's decision, Magistrate Judge F. Keith Ball recommended that Boyd's § 2241 Petition in this Court be dismissed. In the Report and Recommendation [14], Judge Ball characterized Boyd's petition as successive and constituting an abuse of the writ. He gave the parties until May 15, 2017, to file any objections.

         Having received no objections, on May 25, 2017, this Court adopted Judge Ball's Report and Recommendation and granted Defendant Warden Nash's Motion to Dismiss. See Order [15]. A day later, Boyd's Objection [17] reached the Court, prompting the Government to respond [18] that it was untimely. Boyd thereafter filed two more documents [19, 20] supplementing his Objection and arguing that the Court should consider it.

         II. Motion to File an Untimely Objection

         Boyd says his Objection should be considered timely because there was a disturbance in the prison mailing system that caused him to receive the Report and Recommendation on May 14, 2017, a mere day before any objections were due. Pet'r's Aff. [17-1]. More specifically, he says “[t]he mail delay is do [sic] to phones being thrown over the fence, the [d]rain flooded in several units, and their [sic] has been a shortage of staff.” Id. at 1.

         The Court construes Boyd's collective submissions as a request to file an untimely objection. Such relief may be granted to a petitioner after a deadline has passed if the following considerations do not counsel against it: (1) “the possibility of prejudice to the other parties, ” (2) “the length of the applicant's delay and its impact on the proceeding, ” (3) “the reason for the delay and whether it was within the control of the movant, ” and (4) “whether the movant has acted in good faith.” Salts v. Epps, 676 F.3d 468, 474 (5th Cir. 2012). Here, Boyd's explanation for the alleged delay in receiving the Report and Recommendation sounds fishy, but the Court will grant the extension primarily because there is no prejudice and the delay is slight.

         III. Objection to Report and Recommendation

         Judge Ball concluded that Boyd's § 2241 Petition in this Court is successive in light of the § 2254 petition he filed in the Western District of Kentucky in Boyd I. In both petitions, Boyd argues that his liberty interests are harmed by the Kentucky Parole Board's delay in acting upon the writ of detainer. Specifically, Boyd says the almost eight-year delay in bringing his revocation to a hearing will prejudice his ability to present mitigating evidence at that hearing. See Def.'s Mot., Ex. 5 [10-5] ...


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