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Kenion v. Johnson
United States District Court, D. New Jersey
September 30, 2019
KEITH KENION, Petitioner,
STEVEN JOHNSON, et al., Respondents.
B. KUGLER UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Keith Kenion, is a state prisoner proceeding pro se with a
petition for a writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
§ 2254. Petitioner was convicted in 2006 by a jury of
kidnapping, robbery, and related offenses. He is currently
serving an aggregate term of life in prison with an
eighty-five percent period of parole ineligibility pursuant
to New Jersey's No. Early Release Act
(“NERA”). N.J. Stat. Ann. § 2C:43-7.2. For
the reasons set forth below, the petition will be denied and
a certificate of appealability shall not issue.
opinion on appeal from Petitioner's post-conviction
relief (“PCR”) proceedings, the New Jersey
Appellate Division provided the following summary of the
factual background of Petitioner's case:
[. . .] On September 8, 2003, defendant and co-defendant
Wayne Parker entered the home of Anthony and Carolyn Young,
then ages 81 and 80, respectively. Defendant struck Mr. Young
in the head with ceramic household objects and compelled Mr.
Young to show him the location of a coin collection he
maintained. Defendant then bound and gagged Mr. Young.
Parker assaulted Mrs. Young and forced her to open a safe and
locked drawers containing coins and other valuables, which
were removed, and then bound her with ripped clothing. A
third accomplice, John Palmer, appeared and helped remove the
valuables from the residence. Defendant, Parker, and Palmer
fled when someone came to the residence and rang the
doorbell. Mrs. Young untied herself and untied and removed
the gag from Mr. Young, who was unresponsive.
Mrs. Young spent a week in the hospital recovering from her
injuries. In our previous opinion, we described Mr.
Young's condition as follows:
Mr. Young was diagnosed with blunt force trauma to the head,
multiple facial fractures and severe swelling. Doctors deemed
him unfit for surgery due to his pre-existing medical
condition. As a result, his injuries are unlikely to heal or
to heal well. His ... injuries created a substantial risk of
death and of serious impairment of his ability to eat solid
[State v. Kenion, No. A-5665-05T4, 2009 WL 2015772,
at *2 ( N.J.Super.Ct.App.Div. July 13, 2009).]
Mrs. Young gave a description of the assailants and
specifically naming Parker. Police interviewed Parker's
girlfriend and obtained search warrants for her vehicle and
home, where they recovered objects taken from the Young
residence. Police also obtained and executed a search warrant
for the residence occupied by Parker. While doing so, police
observed Palmer and two individuals drive by the residence
twice. Police stopped the vehicle. Detective Francine Webb
and another officer recovered coins belonging to the Youngs
from Palmer, who was operating the vehicle. After police
secured Palmer in their vehicle, they returned to the vehicle
Palmer had been operating, and removed defendant. They
discovered more currency and coins belonging to the Youngs on
the back seat and floor of the vehicle next to defendant.
Detective Webb asked defendant “[A]re you
Keith[?]” and defendant responded “[Y]es. I'm
from North Carolina. I'm Keith Kenion.” After
defendant was removed from the vehicle, a pat down by another
officer yielded more coins belonging to the Youngs. Defendant
was thereafter tried, convicted, and sentenced.
State v. Kenion, No. A-1883-14T4, 2017 WL 5664395,
at *1-2 ( N.J.Super.Ct.App.Div. Nov. ...
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