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DeJesus v. Warden, SCI-Houtzdale

United States District Court, M.D. Pennsylvania

December 19, 2017

ANTHONY DEJESUS, Petitioner
v.
WARDEN, SCI-HOUTZDALE, et al., Respondents

          MEMORANDUM

          Christopher C. Conner, Chief Judge United States District Court Middle District of Pennsylvania

         On March 6, 2013, petitioner Anthony DeJesus ("DeJesus"), was convicted of two counts of aggravated assault and one count of persons not to possess firearms, in the Court of Common Pleas of Lebanon County, Pennsylvania. (Doc. 1). He was sentenced to a term of imprisonment of eleven to thirty years. (Id.) On May 19, 2016, DeJesus filed the instant petition for writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254, challenging his underlying sentence. (Id.) For the reasons set forth below, the court will deny the petition as untimely.

         I. Background

         The facts underlying DeJesus' convictions are summarized as follows:

On June 14, 2012, Scott Folsom ('Folsom'), a resident of North Carolina, was visiting the City of Lebanon. On that evening, he and some companions were walking to their vehicle after leaving the William Penn Bar. Between leaving the bar and reaching the vehicle, the group became involved in verbal confrontation with an unidentified female. After the group had entered the vehicle, they were approached by a group of men, allegedly including [DeJesus]. One of the men punched the window and Folsom got out of the vehicle. The man first punched Folsom, then pulled a gun out and shot him.

Trial Court Opinion, 12/18/12, at 1-2.

The police began an investigation of this incident on the night the shooting occurred. Four days after the incident, on June 18, 2012, a person informed the police that DeJesus was the shooter. This person wished to remain anonymous, and so his or her name did not appear in the resulting police report. The following day, Detective Keith Ulrich assembled a photo array and presented it to Folsom. When Folsom viewed it, he identified DeJesus as the man who shot him. One week later, Spencer Wyse ("Wyse"), Folsom's friend who had also been present at the incident, viewed a photo array and identified DeJesus as the shooter.

Commonwealth v. DeJesus, 2014 WL 11016397, at *1 (Pa. Super. 2014).

         A jury trial was held on March 6, 2013. See https://ujsportal.pacourts.us, electronic docket number CP-38-CR-0001098-2012. At the conclusion of the trial, DeJesus was convicted of two counts of aggravated assault and one count of persons not to possess firearms and sentenced to six to 20 years of incarceration on the aggravated assault convictions, and 5 to 10 years of incarceration on the persons not to possess a firearm conviction. Id.

         On April 25, 2013, DeJesus filed a notice of appeal with the Pennsylvania Superior Court. Commonwealth v. DeJesus, 771 MDA 2013. On January 13, 2014, the Pennsylvania Superior Court affirmed the judgment of sentence. IcL DeJesus did not file a petition for allowance of appeal to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. See https://uisportal.pacourts.us, electronic docket number CP-38-CR-0001098-2012.

         On December 5, 2014, DeJesus filed a petition for post-conviction collateral relief pursuant to the Post Conviction Relief Act ("PCRA"), 42 PA. CONS. STAT. §§ 9541-46. See https://uisportal.pacourts.us, electronic docket number CP-38-CR- 0001098-2012. On January 27, 2015, the Common Pleas Court denied the PCRA petition. IcL On February 23, 2015, DeJesus filed a notice of appeal in the Pennsylvania Superior Court. Commonwealth v. DeJesus, 353 MDA 2015. On August 18, 2015, the Pennsylvania Superior Court affirmed the dismissal of the PCRA petition. IcL On August 26, 2015, DeJesus filed a petition for allowance of appeal with the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. Commonwealth v. DeJesus, 650 MAL 2015. On December 10, 2015, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court denied the petition for allowance of appeal. Id.

         DeJesus filed the instant federal habeas petition on May 19, 2016. (Doc. 1).

          II. Discussion

         The court shall "entertain an application for a writ of habeas corpus in behalf of a person in custody pursuant to the judgment of a State court only on the ground that he is in custody in violation of the Constitution or laws or treaties of the United States." 28 U.S.C. § 2254(a). A petition filed under § 2254 must be timely filed under the stringent standards set forth in the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 ("AEDPA"), Pub.L. No. 104-132, 110 Stat. 1214 (Apr. 24, 1996). See 28 U.S.C. ยง 2244(d)(1). Specifically, a state prisoner ...


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