United States District Court, W.D. Pennsylvania
MAUREEN P. KELLY, CHIEF UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
Patrick Sledge (“Petitioner”) was released on
parole at the time of filing this Petition for Writ of Habeas
Corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254 (the
“Petition”), challenging his state court
convictions for drug possession and possession with intent to
deliver. As Respondents correctly pointed out, the Petition
is time-barred, and, as such, it will be dismissed.
State Court Procedural History
Pennsylvania Superior Court, in its Opinion denying post
conviction relief, described the procedural history of the
case as follows:
On July 16, 2008, following Sledge's arrest, Attorney
David Kaiser entered his appearance, waived Sledge's
arraignment, and entered a plea of not guilty. On August 18,
2008, Attorney Kaiser filed an Omnibus Pretrial Motion, which
included a motion to suppress, a motion to dismiss pursuant
to Rule 600, and a motion for writ of habeas corpus. On
October 17, 2008, the Honorable John J. Wagner, Jr. of the
Fayette County Court of Common Pleas held a hearing on the
Omnibus Pretrial Motion. On January 26, 2009, Judge Wagner
denied all of Sledge's motions. Prior to the beginning of
trial, Attorney Kaiser filed a Motion to Withdraw, which the
Honorable Conrad Capuzzi granted on June 3, 2009. Attorney
Sally Frick subsequently entered her appearance as trial
On March 8, 2010, a jury convicted Sledge of possession with
intent to deliver 13.2 grams of cocaine and possession with
intent to deliver 100 grams of marijuana. On April 5, 2010,
the trial court sentenced Sledge to 18-36 months'
imprisonment for possession with intent to deliver cocaine
and a consecutive term of 1-12 months' imprisonment for
possession with intent to deliver marijuana. On October 24,
2011, this Court affirmed the judgments of sentence.
Commonwealth v. Sledge, 682 WDA 2010 (Pa. Super.
filed October 24, 2011) (unpublished memorandum). On January
9, 2012, we denied reconsideration. Sledge did not appeal to
the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.
On April 30, 2012, Sledge filed a counseled PCRA petition. On
October 5, 2012, Sledge filed a pro se motion to seeking
[sic] removal of his private counsel, Attorney Sally Frick,
and appointment of new counsel by the court. On October 11,
2012, the court ordered the withdrawal of private counsel and
appointment of new counsel. On October 15, 2012, Sledge filed
an amended pro se PCRA petition alleging ineffective
assistance of counsel. Appointed counsel did not file a
counseled PCRA petition. On December 5, 2012, Sledge
requested leave to proceed pro se. On May 13, 2013, the PCRA
court conducted a hearing pursuant to Commonwealth v.
Grazier, 552 Pa. 9, 713 A.2d 81 (1998), and granted
Sledge's request to represent himself at the PCRA
evidentiary hearing. See Id. at 82 (“When a
waiver of the right to counsel is sought at the
post-conviction and appellate stages, an on-the-record
determination should be made that the waiver is a knowing,
intelligent, and voluntary one”). On June 12, 2013, the
court held an evidentiary hearing on Sledge's PCRA
petition. On August 9, 2013, the court denied Sledge's
petition. Sledge filed a timely appeal and timely statement
of matters complained of on appeal.
Com. v. Sledge, 1473 WDA 2013, 2014 WL 10914349, at
*1 (Pa. Super. July 1, 2014).
Superior Court affirmed the denial of PCRA relief on July 1,
2014. Petitioner then filed a timely Petition for Allowance
of Appeal in the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, which denied it
on November 25, 2014. Com. v. Sledge, 104 A.3d 4
(Pa. Nov. 25, 2014) (Table).
meantime, Petitioner was released on parole as of August 20,
2013. ECF No. 10 at 2 ¶ 2.
Federal Court Procedural History
proceeding pro se, requested, ECF No. 1, and was granted in
forma pauperis status. ECF No. 3. Petitioner filed exhibits
in support of the Petition, ECF No. 2, and the Petition. ECF
No 4. The Petition named as respondents, inter alia, the
Pennsylvania Board of Probation and Parole (“the
Board”), as his custodian given that at the time he
initiated these proceedings in October 2015, Petitioner had
already been released on parole; however, because Petitioner
was challenging his underlying conviction, the District
Attorney of Fayette County was added as a party respondent to
defend the constitutionality of Petitioner's conviction.
ECF No. 5. The Board filed an Answer, indicating that because
the Petition was not challenging Petitioner's parole,
Petitioner is not entitled to any relief against the Board.
ECF No. 10. The District Attorney of Fayette County filed an
Answer (“the Answer”), raising the statute of
limitations defense. ECF No. 10. Petitioner then filed
Exhibits in support of the Petition, which was the transcript
of the PCRA hearing conducted on June 12, 2013. ECF No. 11.
Petitioner did not file a traverse challenging the fact that
the Petition is time-barred.
parties have consented to have the United States Magistrate
Judge exercise ...