-DLB (HC) O'Hara v. Hartley et al, No. 1:2010cv02271 - Document 17 (E.D. Cal. 2011)

Court Description: FINDINGS and RECOMMENDATIONS recommending that the 5 Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus be Denied with Prejudice signed by Magistrate Judge Dennis L. Beck on 02/03/2011. Referred to Judge Ishii; Objections to F&R due by 3/10/2011. (Flores, E)
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-DLB (HC) O'Hara v. Hartley et al Doc. 17 1 2 3 4 5 6 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 7 EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 8 9 PATRICK O’HARA, 10 1:10-cv-02271-AWI-DLB (HC) Petitioner, FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATION 11 v. 12 JAMES HARTLEY, 13 Respondent. 14 / 15 Petitioner is a state prisoner proceeding pro se with a petition for writ of habeas corpus 16 pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254. 17 Petitioner filed the instant petition for writ of habeas corpus on October 26, 2010. 18 Petitioner challenges the California court decisions upholding an October 1, 2008, decision of the 19 California Board of Parole Hearings. Petitioner claims the California courts unreasonably 20 determined that there was some evidence he posed a current risk of danger to the public if 21 released. 22 Because California’s statutory parole scheme guarantees that prisoners will not be denied 23 parole absent some evidence of present dangerousness, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals held 24 that California law creates a liberty interest in parole that may be enforced under the Due Process 25 Clause. Hayward v. Marshall, 602 F.3d 546, 561-563 (9th Cir. 2010); Pearson v. Muntz, 606 26 F.3d 606, 608-609 (9th Cir. 2010); Cooke v. Solis, 606 F.3d 1206, 1213 (2010), rev’d, Swarthout 27 v. Cooke, ___ U.S.___, ___ S.Ct. ___, 2011 WL 197627 (Jan. 24, 2011). The Ninth Circuit 28 1 Dockets.Justia.com 1 instructed reviewing federal district courts to determine whether California’s application of 2 California’s “some evidence” rule was unreasonable or was based on an unreasonable 3 determination of the facts in light of the evidence. Hayward v. Marshall. 603 F.3d at 563; 4 Pearson v. Muntz, 606 F.3d at 608. 5 On January 24, 2011, the Supreme Court issued a per curiam opinion in Swarthout v. 6 Cooke, ___ U.S.___, ___ S.Ct. ___, 2011 WL 197627 (Jan. 24, 2011). In Swarthout, the 7 Supreme Court held that “the responsibility for assuring that the constitutionally adequate 8 procedures governing California’s parole system are properly applied rests with California 9 courts, and is no part of the Ninth Circuit’s business.” The federal habeas court’s inquiry into 10 whether a prisoner denied parole received due process is limited to determining whether the 11 prisoner “was allowed an opportunity to be heard and was provided a statement of the reasons 12 why parole was denied.” Id., citing, Greenholtz v. Inmates of Neb. Penal and Correctional 13 Complex, 442 U.S. 1, 16 (1979). Review of the instant case reveals Petitioner was present at his 14 parole hearing, was given an opportunity to be heard, and was provided a statement of reasons 15 for the parole board’s decision. (See Pet. Ex. A.) Per the Supreme Court, this is “the beginning 16 and the end of the federal habeas courts’ inquiry into whether [the prisoner] received due 17 process.” Swarthout, 2011 WL 197627. “The Constitution does not require more [process].” 18 Greenholtz, 442 U.S. at 16. Therefore, the instant petition does not present cognizable claims for 19 relief and should be denied. 20 21 22 23 RECOMMENDATION Accordingly, the Court HEREBY RECOMMENDS that the petition for writ of habeas corpus be DENIED with prejudice. This Findings and Recommendation is submitted to the Honorable Anthony W. Ishii, 24 United States District Court Judge, pursuant to the provisions of 28 U.S.C. section 636 (b)(1)(B) 25 and Rule 304 of the Local Rules of Practice for the United States District Court, Eastern District 26 of California. 27 28 Within thirty (30) days after date of service of this Findings and Recommendation, any party may file written objections with the Court and serve a copy on all parties. Such a document 2 1 should be captioned “Objections to Magistrate Judge’s Findings and Recommendation.” Replies 2 to the Objections shall be served and filed within fourteen (14) days after date of service of the 3 Objections. The Finding and Recommendation will then be submitted to the District Court for 4 review of the Magistrate Judge’s ruling pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636 (b)(1)(C). The parties are 5 advised that failure to file objections within the specified time may waive the right to appeal the 6 Order of the District Court. Martinez v. Ylst, 951 F.2d 1153 (9th Cir. 1991). 7 8 9 10 IT IS SO ORDERED. Dated: 3b142a February 3, 2011 /s/ Dennis L. Beck UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 3