United States District Court, M.D. Pennsylvania
Matthew W. Brann United States District Judge
Nelson Hansen, an inmate presently confined at the State
Correctional Institution, Albion, Pennsylvania (SCI-Albion),
filed this pro se petition for writ of habeas corpus
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254. Named as Respondent is
SCI-Albion Superintendent Michael Clark. Service of the
Petition was previously ordered.
was convicted of first degree murder and related charges on
July 13, 2011 following a jury trial in the Court of Common
Pleas of York County, Pennsylvania. He was sentenced to a
mandatory term of life imprisonment on August 24, 2011.
Petitioner's pending action claims entitlement to federal
habeas corpus relief on the grounds that trial counsel and
post conviction counsel both provided ineffective assistance
and there was insufficient evidence to support the verdict.
the denial of a post-sentence motion, Hansen filed a timely
direct appeal asserting that there was insufficient evidence
to support the guilty verdict in that the Commonwealth failed
to prove specific intent to kill. The Pennsylvania Superior
Court affirmed Petitioner's sentence by decision dated
August 17, 2012.
petition for allowance of appeal was denied by the Supreme
Court of Pennsylvania on February 4, 2013. Hansen did not
seek further review from the Supreme Court of the United
April 19, 2014, Petitioner filed a petition pursuant to
Pennsylvania's Post Conviction Relief Act
(PCRA). Hansen's petition alleged that he had
received ineffective assistance of counsel. Following a
hearing, the trial court denied relief on August 8, 2014. The
Pennsylvania Superior Court affirmed the denial of PCRA
relief on October 19, 2016. A request for allocator was
denied by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court on October 19, 2016.
pending before this Court is Respondent's motion to
dismiss Petitioner's action as untimely filed.
See Doc. 13. The opposed motion is now ripe for
supporting brief initially notes that Petitioner's
pending action was initiated on November 3, 2016.
See Doc. 15, p. 3. Confusingly, the Respondent later
asserts that this matter should be deemed filed as of October
27, 2016. See Id. at p. 6.
action was clearly docketed with this Court on November 3,
2016. His petition and accompanying supporting memorandum are
both dated October 24, 2016. See Doc. 1,
p.15. A copy of a letter submitted by Petitioner
indicates that he mailed out his habeas petition on October
27, 2016. See Doc. 14, p. 15. However, other
documents provided by Hansen which are both file stamped
October 24, 2016 by a prison official support a finding that
his habeas corpus petition was given to prison officials for
the purpose of mailing on that day. See Id. at pp.
well settled that a prisoner's action is deemed filed at
the time it is given to prison officials for mailing to the
Court. See Houston v. Lack, 487 U.S. 266 (1988).
Since Hansen submitted supporting documents which support a
determination that his petition was given to prison officials
for mailing on October 24, 2016, the Court will accept the
pro se Petitioner's multiple contentions that
his action was submitted to prison officials for mailing on
that day; this matter will be deemed filed as of October 24,
2244(d) of Title 28 of the United States Code provides, in
relevant part, as follows:
(d)(1) A 1-year period of limitation 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