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Chambers v. Bogan

United States District Court, E.D. Pennsylvania

January 15, 2020

MARK CHAMBERS, Petitioner,
P/O TIMOTHY BOGAN, et al., Respondents.



         Before the Court is the pro se Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241 (Doc. No. 1) filed by Mark Chambers (“Petitioner”), a state prisoner incarcerated at a State Correctional Institution located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Id. at 1.) On October 17, 2019, United States Magistrate Judge Thomas J. Reuter issued a Report and Recommendation (the “R&R”), recommending that the Petition be summarily dismissed without prejudice and that a certificate of appealability not be issued. (Doc. No. 7.) On October 31, 2019, Petitioner filed Objections to the R&R in a document titled “Motion for Objection and a Timely Response to the United States District [Report and] Recommendation” (Doc. No. 8) (the “Objection”). For reasons that follow, the Court will approve and adopt the R&R (Doc. No. 7), summarily dismiss the Petition (Doc. No. 1), and shall not issue a certificate of appealability.


         The following facts are taken from the R&R:[1]

On April 22, 2019, Petitioner was arrested on multiple drug and firearm offenses. See Docket, Commonwealth v. Chambers (No. MC-51-CR-10635-2019) (Mun. Ct. of Phila. filed Apr. 23, 2019). The case was continued two times, once at the request of the Commonwealth and once at the request of the defense. Bail was set at $200, 000 on April 23, 2019 and then decreased to $100, 000 on June 24, 2019. The case was thereafter transferred to the Court of Common Pleas and an information was filed on June 27, 2019. See Docket, Commonwealth v. Chambers (No. CP-51-CR4488-2019) (Ct. Com. Pl. of Phila. Cnty. filed June 25, 2019). Petitioner is currently in pretrial detention at a Philadelphia County jail. A motion to proceed pro se was filed on September 6, 2019 and a motion for modification of bail was filed on September 13, 2019. See Id. at 4. [On November 22, 2019, Petitioner filed a Motion to Dismiss, which remains pending. See Id. at 5.]

(Doc. No. 7 at 1-2.) On August 31, 2019, Petitioner filed the instant pro se Petition for a Writ of Habeas Corpus. (Doc. No. 1.) In the Petition, Petitioner asserted four grounds for relief: (1) violation of the Fourteenth Amendment; (2) violation of the Eighteenth Amendment; (3) violation of the Fifth Amendment; and (4) unconstitutional arrest, which the Court interprets as an alleged violation of the Fourth Amendment. (Id. at 7-9.) He requested “immediate release and discharge from Philadelphia County Prison, dismissal of all charges, protection from the Narcotic Bureau of Philadelphia['s] false police department policies, [and] justice against [his] current unconstitutional detention.” (Id. at 9.)

         On October 17, 2019, Magistrate Judge Reuter issued the R&R recommending that the Petition be summarily dismissed without prejudice because Petitioner had not exhausted state court remedies and had shown no “exceptional circumstances” warranting the court's intervention at this juncture. (Doc. No. 7 at 4.) To that end, Judge Reuter found that Petitioner's alleged violations could be remedied by “a multitude of state court remedies . . ., such as raising [the alleged violations] in pretrial motions, during trial, and during post-trial proceedings.” (Id. at 3-4.)

         On October 31, 2019, Petitioner filed the instant Objection to the R&R and argued that exceptional circumstances exist in his case. (Doc. No. 8.) Specifically, Petitioner argued that the Philadelphia Police Department and District Attorney's Office engaged in the following due process violations: (1) Officer Bogan's “produc[tion] of a fake search warrant” to obtain entry to his home, (2) “the District Attorney's . . . participating in malicious prosecution by not revealing … exculpatory discovery, ” and (3) “the District Attorney's allowance of [Bogan] to . . . [commit] perjury [and] testif[y] to fabrications of events, dates, times and identifications[.]” (Doc. No. 8 at 4.) Petitioner argues that these are “the exact type of exceptional circumstances to give this Court the power to grant [him a] writ [of habeas corpus] according to [28 U.S.C.] § 2241(c)(3).”


         Under 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(B) and the local rules of this Court, a district judge is permitted to designate a magistrate judge to make proposed findings and recommendations on petitions for post-conviction relief. Any party may file objections in response to the magistrate judge's Report and Recommendation. Id. § 636(b)(1)(C). Whether or not an objection is made, a district judge “may accept, reject, or modify, in whole or in part, the findings or recommendations made by the magistrate judge.” Id. “The [district] judge may also receive further evidence or recommit the matter to the magistrate judge with further instructions.” Id. “[I]t must be assumed that the normal practice of the district judge is to give some reasoned consideration to the magistrate's report before adopting it as the decision of the court.” Henderson v. Carlson, 812 F.2d 874, 878 (3d Cir. 1987); see also 28 U.S.C. § 636(b).

         In the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, Local Rule 72.1.IV(b) governs a petitioner's objections to a magistrate judge's report and recommendation. Under that rule, a petitioner must “specifically identify the portions of the proposed findings, recommendations or report to which objection is made and the basis for such objections.” Savior v. Superintendent of Huntingdon SCI, No. 11-5639, 2012 WL 4206566, at *1 (E.D. Pa. Sept. 20, 2012). Upon review, “[a district judge] shall make a de novo determination of those portions of the report or specified proposed findings or recommendations to which objection is made.” 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(C).

         De novo review is non-deferential and generally permits the district court to conduct an “independent review” of the entire matter. Salve Regina College v. Russell, 499 U.S. 225, 238 (1991). “Although [the] review is de novo, [a district judge] [is] permitted, by statute, to rely upon the magistrate judge's proposed findings and recommendations to the extent [the judge], in the exercise of sound discretion, deem[s] proper.” Owens v. Beard, 829 F.Supp. 736, 738 (M.D. Pa. 1993) (citing United States v. Raddatz, 447 U.S. 667, 676 (1980)).

         IV. ANALYSIS

         A. ...

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