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Mauleon v. Banks

United States District Court, D. New Jersey

June 27, 2018

MARGARITO MAULEON, Petitioner,
v.
WILLIE BANKS, et al., Respondents.

         APPEARANCES:

          JOSEPH D. CORONADO, Ocean County Prosecutor ROBERTA DIBIASE, Supervising Assistant Prosecutor Ocean County Prosecutor's Office Attorneys for Respondent Willie Banks

          OPINION

          PETER G. SHERIDAN, U.S.D.J.

         I. INTRODUCTION

         Before the Court is Respondent State of New Jersey's motion to dismiss Margarito Mauleon's petition for writ of habeas corpus as untimely. (ECF No. 6). Petitioner did not file any opposition to the motion. For the reasons stated herein, the Court will dismiss the petition as time-barred, and no certificate of appealability will issue. Petitioner shall have 30 days to submit any arguments as to why he should be given the benefit of equitable tolling.

         II. BACKGROUND

         An Ocean County jury convicted Petitioner of first-degree attempted murder, N.J. Stat. Ann. § 2C:11-3, 2C:5-1; second-degree possession of a firearm for an unlawful purpose, N.J. Stat. Ann. § 2C:39-4(a); third-degree aggravated assault, N.J. Stat. Ann. § 2C: 12-1 (b)(2); fourth-degree aggravated assault, N.J. Stat. Ann. § 2C: 12-1(b)(4); third-degree unlawful possession of a weapon, N.J. Stat. Ann. § 2C:39-5(d); and third-degree possession of a controlled dangerous substance, N.J. Stat. Ann. § 2C:35-10(a)(1). (ECF No. 6-2).[1] "The proofs at trial showed defendant went to the home of his former girlfriend and shot the victim in front of her and one other witness." (ECF No. 6-2 at 1-2 (citing State v. Mauleon, No. A-5003-07 ( N.J.Super.Ct.App.Div. Aug. 13, 2009), certif. denied, 985 A.2d 646 (N.J. 2009))). The trial court sentenced Petitioner to a twenty-year term of imprisonment with a seventeen-year period of parole ineligibility. (ECF No. 6-2 at 2). The Appellate Division affirmed the convictions but remanded for resentencing on direct appeal. (Ibid.). The New Jersey Supreme Court denied certification on December 16, 2009. State v. Mauleon, 985 A.2d 646 (N.J. 2009).

         Petitioner was resentenced on October 23, 2009 to a fifteen-year term of imprisonment subject to a period of parole ineligibility under New Jersey's No. Early Release Act, N.J. Stat. Ann. § 2C:43-7.2. (ECF No. 6-2 at 2). He appealed, and the Appellate Division affirmed the sentence on its excessive sentencing calendar on January 13, 2011. (Ibid). Petitioner did not file a petition for certification from this appeal.

         On September 19, 2014, Petitioner filed a post-conviction relief ("PCR") petition in the Law Division. (ECF No. 1 ¶ 11(a)(3)). According to the Appellate Division, the PCR court denied the petition as time-barred under New Jersey Court Rule 3:22-12(a) "because it was not filed within five years of the entry of defendant's original judgment of conviction on February 1, 2008, and defendant failed to demonstrate an entitlement to relief from the time-bar as required under the Rule." (ECF No. 6-2 at 3). The PCR court also denied Petitioner's ineffective assistance of counsel claims on the merits. (Ibid). On January 26, 2017, the Appellate Division affirmed the PCR court's decision on the merits of the Petitioner's ineffective assistance of counsel claim and stated that it was "unnecessary to consider defendant's argument that the court erred by finding his petition was time -barred under Rule 3:22-12." (ECF No. 6-2 at 6). The New Jersey Supreme Court denied certification on March 21, 2017. (ECF No. 1 ¶ 11(d)).

         Petitioner submitted his § 2254 petition on April 27, 2017. (ECF No. 1). The Court ordered Respondent to answer or move to dismiss the petition on timeliness grounds. (ECF No. 4). Respondent filed the instant motion to dismiss on September 27, 2017, arguing the petition was filed after the one-year statute of limitations expired. (ECF No. 6). Petitioner did not file a response to the motion.[2]

         III. ANALYSIS

         Petitioner's habeas petition is governed by the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 ("AEDPA"). AEDPA imposes a one-year period of limitation on a petitioner seeking to challenge his state conviction and sentence through a petition for writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254. Under § 2244(d)(1), the limitations period runs 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 ...

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