United States District Court, D. Nevada
M. Navarro, United States District Court Chief Judge.
habeas action under 28 U.S.C. § 2254 comes before the
Court on petitioner's application to proceed in forma
pauperis (ECF No. 1), her motion for appointment of
counsel (ECF No. 3), and her motion to add an additional
ground (ECF No. 4), as well as for initial review.
Court finds based on the current record that petitioner is
unable to pay the filing fee within a reasonable period of
time, and the pauper application therefore will be granted.
The Court reserves the option of requiring petitioner to
provide updated and additional financial information should
her financial status be at issue later in the case.
petitioner's motion for appointment of counsel, the Sixth
Amendment right to counsel does not apply in habeas corpus
actions. See Knaubert v. Goldsmith, 791 F.2d 722,
728 (9th Cir. 1986). However, 18 U.S.C. § 3006A(a)(2)(B)
authorizes a district court to appoint counsel to represent a
financially eligible habeas petitioner whenever "the
court determines that the interests of justice so
require." The decision to appoint counsel lies within
the discretion of the court; and, absent an order for an
evidentiary hearing, appointment is mandatory only when the
circumstances of a particular case indicate that appointed
counsel is necessary to prevent a due process violation.
See, e.g., Chaney v. Lewis, 801 F.2d 1191, 1196 (9th
Court is not persuaded that the interests of justice require
the appointment of counsel herein. The issues presented are
not unduly complex, and petitioner has demonstrated an
adequate ability to articulate her claims and arguments with
the resources available to her. The relative duration of
petitioner's sentence, standing alone, otherwise does not
argue in favor of applying limited indigent defender
motion for appointment of counsel therefore will be denied.
to Add Additional Ground
federal petition includes five grounds challenging the
judgment of conviction and one ground challenging the state
court determination that her state post-conviction petition
was untimely. Petitioner submitted the motion to add
additional ground at the same time as the federal petition,
seeking “permission to explore the original five (5)
grounds in addition to one more to challenge the procedural
time bar.” (ECF No. 4, at 1.)
motion will be denied as unnecessary. The additional claim
already is in the federal petition, as Ground 1; and the
Court's permission to include the claim in the first
instance is not required.
to Sign and Verify the Petition
signed neither the petition nor the verification of the
petition. (ECF No. 1-1, at 15.). Rule 11(a) of the Federal
Rules of Civil Procedure and Rule 2(b)(5) of the Rules
Governing Section 2254 Cases (the “Habeas Rules”)
together require that a petitioner sign both the petition and
the verification. The Court will give petitioner an
opportunity to file a pleading that is both signed and
verified. If she does not timely do so, the action will be
dismissed without further advance notice.