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Dickson v. Pierce

United States District Court, D. Delaware

August 12, 2014

GREGORY C. DICKSON, Petitioner,
v.
DAVID PIERCE, Warden, and ATTORNEY GENERAL OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE, Respondents.[1]

Gregory C. Dickson. Pro se Petitioner.

Maria Knoll, Deputy Attorney General of the Delaware Department of Justice, Wilmington, Delaware. Attorney for Respondents.

MEMORANDUM OPINION

LEONARD P. STARK, District Judge.

I. INTRODUCTION

Pending before the Court is an Application For A Writ Of Habeas Corpus Pursuant To 28 U.S.C. § 2254 ("Petition") filed by Petitioner Gregory C. Dickson ("Petitioner"). (D.I. 1; D.L 6; D.I.7) For the reasons discussed, the Court will dismiss the Petition as time-barred by the limitations period prescribed in 28 U.S.C. § 2244.

II. BACKGROUND

On February 19, 2009, Petitioner pled guilty to second degree rape. See Dickson v. State, 991 A.2d 17 (Table), 2010 WL 537731, at *1 (Del. Feb. 16, 2010). On August 10, 2009, the Superior Court sentenced Petitioner as an habitual offender to forty years of incarceration at Level V. Id. Petitioner filed a pro se motion to withdraw his guilty plea, which was denied on November 23, 2009. Id. On February 16, 2010, the Delaware Supreme Court affirmed Petitioner's conviction and sentence. Id. at *2.

Acting pro se, Petitioner filed the instant § 2254 Petition in July, 2011 (D.I. 1), and he subsequently filed two amendments in October, 2011. (D.I. 6; D.I. 7) The Petition asserts two grounds for relief: (1) his guilty plea was involuntary because defense counsel promised that he would receive a twenty-five year sentence; and (2) the Superior Court violated his Due Process rights by re-sentencing him in absentia. The State filed an Answer, asserting that the Petition should be dismissed as time-barred or, alternatively, because the claims asserted therein are procedurally barred or meritless. (D.1. 13)

III. THE ONE YEAR STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS

The Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 ("AEDPA") was signed into law by the President on April 23, 1996. See 28 U.S.C. § 2244(d)(1). AEDPA prescribes a one-year period of limitations for the filing of habeas petitions by state prisoners, which begins to run from the latest of:

(A) the date on which the judgment became final by the conclusion of direct review or the expiration of the time for seeking such review;
(B) the date on which the impediment to filing an application created by State action in violation of the Constitution or laws of the United States is removed, if the applicant was prevented from filing by such State action;
(C) the date on which the constitutional right asserted was initially recognized by the Supreme Court, if the right has been newly recognized by the Supreme Court and made retroactively applicable to cases on collateral review; or
(D) the date on which the factual predicate of the claim or claims presented could have been discovered through ...

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