United States District Court, N.D. West Virginia
WARNER B. CRIDER, Petitioner,
S. KALLIS, Warden, Respondent.
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
E. SEIBERT, U.S. MAGISTRATE JUDGE
9, 2017, the pro se Petitioner Warner B. Crider
(“Petitioner”) filed an Application for Habeas
Corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241. Petitioner is a
federal inmate who is housed at FCI Hazelton and is
challenging the validity of his sentence imposed in the
United States District Court for the Eastern District of
Michigan. On November 2, 2017, the Respondent was directed to
file an answer. On November 28, 2017, the Respondent filed a
response and a Motion to Transfer this matter to the Eastern
District of Michigan. ECF No. 15. In response to the Motion,
the Petitioner indicated he declined to join the Motion and
wanted his case decided by this Court. ECF No. 19.
Accordingly, this matter is pending before the undersigned
for a Report and Recommendation on the merits of the Petition
pursuant to LR PL P 2.
was indicted by a grand jury on December 12, 2001, with
conspiracy to distribute and distribution of controlled
substances. ECF No. 3. A first superseding indictment was
entered on December 12, 2002, which further charged
Petitioner with three drug offenses, and one felon in
possession of ammunition charge. ECF No. 62. On October 24,
2003, Petitioner was found guilty by a jury of conspiracy to
distribute and distribution of controlled substances, three
drug offenses, and a felon in possession of ammunition
charge. ECF No. 115. On March 24, 2004, the Court sentenced
Petitioner to concurrent terms of life, life, five years, and
ten years. ECF No. 132.
April 9, 2004, Petitioner, through trial counsel, filed a
motion for new trial alleging he was not given proper
discovery and evidence which could have been used to impeach
the Government's witnesses. ECF No. 130. The Government
filed a motion to dismiss the Petitioner's motion as
untimely. ECF No. 139. On June 24, 2004, following a hearing
on June 18, 2004, the motion to dismiss was granted with the
Court noting that even if the motion were timely, none of the
claims raised would have warranted a new trial. ECF No. 142.
April 23, 2004, Petitioner filed a notice of appeal, raising
several arguments. ECF No. 135. On August 15, 2005, the Sixth
Circuit rejected all Petitioner's grounds for appeal but
remanded for a Booker re-sentencing, finding that
the district court erred when it sentenced Petitioner under a
mandatory system of sentencing guidelines. United States
v. Booker, 548 U.S. 220, 244 (2005).
January 6, 2006, Petitioner filed a second motion for a new
trial, this time pro se, again alleging
Brady violations by the prosecution in withholding
evidence, and alleging perjury by witnesses. ECF No. 170;
179. On June 30, 2006 the Court issued an order which denied
Petitioner's second motion for a new trial. ECF No. 182.
Petitioner appealed that Order on July 13, 2006. The Sixth
Circuit affirmed the Order on September 17, 2007, again
denying Petitioner's motion for a new trial. ECF No. 207.
28, 2013, Petitioner filed a motion to vacate sentence under
28 U.S.C. § 2255 raising 14 fourteen grounds and
requesting an evidentiary hearing. ECF No. 256. He filed an
amended motion on July 29, 2013. ECF No. 259. Petitioner
subsequently filed a motion for sentence reduction on
November 6, 2014. ECF No. 268. On April 20, 2016, the Court
granted Petitioner's motion for sentence reduction and
re-sentenced him under 28 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(2) from life
imprisonment to a term of 360 months. On the same date the
Court denied Petitioner's 2255 motion. Petitioner filed
the instant petition pro se on June 9, 2017.
support of his § 2241 petition before this Court
Petitioner cites Mathis v. United States in arguing
that his sentence is improper. Mathis v. United
States, 136 S.Ct. 2243, 195 L.Ed.2d 604 (2016).
Petitioner claims that under Mathis, his previous
Michigan drug conviction cannot be used for purposes of 21
U.S.C.§ 851. For relief, he asks that this Court vacate
his § 851 aggravated sentence and resentence him
according to the new law and with the appropriate guidelines.
Petitioner maintains that his arguments coincide with the
Government's position in United States v.
Surratt, 797 F.3d 3d 240 (2015).
STANDARD OF REVIEW
to the provisions of 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(B) and this
Court's local rules, the undersigned is authorized to
review such petitions for relief and submit findings and
recommendations to the District Court. This Court is charged
with screening Petitioner's case to determine if
“it plainly appears from the petition and any attached
exhibits that the petitioner is not entitled to relief in the
district court.” Rule 4, Rules Governing § 2254
Cases in the U.S. District Courts (2014); see also
Rule 1(b) Rules Governing § 2254 Cases in the U.S.
District Courts (2014) (a district court may apply these
rules to a habeas corpus petition not filed pursuant to
§ 2254). As a pro se litigant, Petitioner's
pleadings are accorded liberal construction and held to less
stringent standard than formal pleadings drafted by
attorneys. See Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89,
93-94 (2007) (per curiam). However, even under this less
stringent standard, the petition in this case is subject to
summary dismissal. The requirement of liberal construction
does not mean that the Court can ignore a clear failure to
allege facts which set forth a claim cognizable in a federal
district court. See Weller v. Dep't of Social
Servs., 901 F.2d 387 (4th Cir. 1990). As discussed more
fully below, Petitioner clearly is not entitled to relief
under 28 U.S.C. § 2241, and therefore, no further
response is required of Respondent.