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Williams v. Davis

United States District Court, N.D. Texas, Fort Worth Division

March 28, 2017

GREGORY DEWAYNE WILLIAMS, Petitioner,
v.
LORIE DAVIS, Director, [1] Texas Department of Criminal Justice, Correctional Institutions Division, Respondent.

          MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

          JOHN McBRYDE, UNITED STATES DJBTRICT JUDGE

         This is a petition for a writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254 filed by petitioner, Gregory Dewayne Williams, a state prisoner incarcerated in the Correctional Institutions Division of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ), against Lorie Davis, Director of TDCJ, Respondent. After having considered the pleadings, state court records, and relief sought by petitioner, the court has concluded that the petition should be dismissed as time-barred.

         I. Factual and Procedural History

         On October 3, 2012, in Criminal District Court Number Three of Tarrant County, Texas, Case No. 1263349D, petitioner waived his right to a jury trial and, pursuant to a plea bargain agreement, pleaded guilty to recklessly causing serous bodily injury to a child with a deadly weapon and was sentenced to 50 years' confinement. (SHR[2] at 129-34.) Petitioner did not directly appeal his conviction or sentence. (Pet. at 3.) On April 22, 2015, petitioner filed a state habeas-corpus application challenging his conviction, which was denied by the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals on November 25, 2015, without written order on the findings of the trial court.[3] (SHR at 24 & Action Taken, ECF No. 20-1.) Petitioner filed this federal petition for habeas relief on January 29, 2016.[4] (Pet. at 10.)

         Generally, petitioner claims that the trial court abused its discretion by denying his motion for substitution of trial counsel (ground one); that he received ineffective assistance of trial counsel (grounds two through four); that his guilty plea was the result of ineffective assistance of trial counsel (ground five); that the evidence was insufficient to support a deadly- weapon finding or a finding of recklessness (grounds six and seven); and that his sentence is disproportionate to sentences for like charges and exceeds the maximum sentence the legislature intended (ground eight). (Pet. 6-7, 11, ECF No. 1.) Respondent contends the petition is untimely under the federal statute of limitations. (Resp't's Preliminary Answer at 5-11.)

         II. Statute of Limitations

         The Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 (the AEDPA), Title 28 U.S.C., § 2244(d) imposes a one-year statute of limitations on federal petitions for writ of habeas corpus filed by state prisoners. Section 2244(d) provides:

(1) A 1-year period of limitations shall apply to an application for a writ of habeas corpus by a person in custody pursuant to the judgment of a State court. The limitations period shall run from the latest of-
(A) the date on which the judgment became final by the conclusion of direct review or the expiration of the time for seeking such review;
(B) the date on which the impediment to filing an application created by State action in violation of the Constitution or laws of the United States is removed, if the applicant was prevented from filing by such State action;
(C) the date on which the constitutional right asserted was initially recognized by the Supreme Court, if that right has been newly recognized by the Supreme Court and made retroactively applicable to cases on collateral review; or
(D) the date on which the factual predicate of the claim or claims presented could have been discovered through the exercise of due diligence.
(2) The time during which a properly filed application for State post-conviction or other collateral review with respect to the pertinent judgment or claim is pending shall not be counted toward any ...

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