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Holden v. State

United States District Court, D. Nevada

January 22, 2018

JIM BASS HOLDEN, Petitioner,
v.
STATE OF NEVADA, et al., Respondents.

          ORDER

          ANDREW P. GORDON, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         This counseled, first-amended petition for a writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254 is before the court on respondents' motion to dismiss (ECF No. 25). Petitioner Jim Bass Holden opposed (ECF No. 29), and respondents replied (ECF No. 30).

         Procedural History & Background

         On May 11, 2006, a jury convicted Holden of count 1: burglary while in possession of a firearm; count 2: conspiracy to commit murder; count 3: extortionate collection of debt; and count 4: first-degree murder with use of a deadly weapon (exhibit 13).[1] The state district court sentenced Holden as follows: count 1 - 24 to 120 months; count 2 - 24 to 120 months, concurrent with count 1; count 3 - 21 to 48 months, concurrent with counts 1 and 2; count 4 - life without the possibility of parole plus an equal and consecutive term of life without the possibility of parole for use of the deadly weapon, concurrent with counts 1, 2, and 3 and consecutive to case nos. C202943 and C214716. Exh. 1. Judgment of conviction was entered on June 15, 2006. Id.

         The Nevada Supreme Court affirmed the convictions on October 17, 2007, and remittitur issued on June 2, 2004. Exhs 17, 69.

         Holden filed a state postconviction habeas corpus petition, and the state district court appointed counsel. Exhs. 71, 73. The state district court conducted an evidentiary hearing and subsequently denied the petition. Exhs. 75-78. The Nevada Supreme Court affirmed the denial on May 13, 2014, and remittitur issued on June 24, 2014. Exhs. 23, 85. Holden filed a second state postconviction petition, which the Nevada Supreme Court denied on June 10, 2015. Case No. 65331. Remittitur issued on July 6, 2015. Id.

         Holden dispatched his federal habeas petition for filing on May 27, 2014 (ECF No. 7). The court appointed counsel, and Holden filed a counseled, first-amended petition (ECF No. 16). On April 13, 2015, the court granted Holden's motion for a stay pending final resolution of his state-court proceedings (ECF No. 17). On February 3, 2017, the court granted Holden's motion to reopen the case (ECF No. 23).

         Respondents now argue that several grounds are subject to dismissal as unexhausted (ECF No. 25).

         Legal Standards & Analysis

         Exhaustion

         State prisoners seeking federal habeas relief must comply with the exhaustion rule codified in § 2254(b)(1):

An application for a writ of habeas corpus on behalf of a person in custody pursuant to the judgment of a State court shall not be granted unless it appears that -
(A) The applicant has exhausted the remedies available in the court ...

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