On appeal from Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division, Middlesex County, Indictment No. 92-03-000420.
NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION
Before Judges Skillman and Fuentes.
A jury found defendant guilty of purposeful or knowing murder, in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:11-3(a)(1),(2), and related weapons offenses. On July 28, 1993, the trial court sentenced defendant to life imprisonment, with thirty years of parole ineligibility, for murder, and concurrent terms for the weapons offenses.
On defendant's direct appeal, we affirmed his conviction in an unpublished opinion. State v. Johnson, No. A-752-93T4 (Feb. 7, 1996), and the Supreme Court denied his petition for certification, 144 N.J. 378 (1996).
On June 6, 1996, defendant filed a first petition for post-conviction relief. The trial court denied the petition, and we affirmed the denial in an unpublished opinion. State v. Johnson, No. A-6661-96T4 (June 23, 1998). The Supreme Court denied defendant's petition for certification. 157 N.J. 542 (1998).
On January 11, 1999, defendant filed a second petition for post-conviction relief. The trial court denied that petition. We affirmed the denial in an unpublished opinion, State v. Johnson, No. A-5431-99T4 (June 13, 2001), and the Supreme Court denied certification, 170 N.J. 206 (2001).
On February 2, 2002, defendant filed a federal petition for a writ of habeas corpus. The District Court for the District of New Jersey denied the petition, and the Court of Appeals affirmed the denial. The Supreme Court of the United States denied defendant's petition for a writ of certiorari. Johnson v. Harvey, 546 U.S. 832, 126 S.Ct. 56, 163 L.Ed. 2d 85 (2005).
On August 25, 2008, defendant filed a third petition for post-conviction relief. The trial court denied this petition by an order entered on January 23, 2009, which was supported by a letter statement of reasons dated February 2, 2009.
On appeal, defendant presents the following argument:
TRIAL COURT COMMITTED "PLAIN ERROR" IN RELATION TO THE ARBITRARY, CAPRICIOUS DENIAL OF APPELLANT'S PETITION FOR POST CONVICTION RELIEF.
We reject this argument substantially for the reason set forth in the February 2, 2009 letter of the trial court. Defendant's argument does ...