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Gonzalas v. Williams

United States District Court, D. Nevada

December 13, 2019

LUIS GONZALAS, Petitioner,
v.
BRIAN WILLIMAS, et al., Respondents.

          ORDER

          RICHARD F. BOULWARE, II, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

         Luis Gonzalas' 28 U.S.C. § 2254 Habeas Corpus Petition is before the Court on Respondents' Motion to Dismiss one ground as unexhausted (ECF No. 20). Gonzalas opposed and Respondents replied (ECF Nos. 30, 33).

         I. Procedural History and Background

         In December 2007, a jury convicted Gonzalas of first-degree murder with use of a deadly weapon. Ex. 35, ECF No. 25.[1] The state district court sentenced him to life in prison with the possibility of parole, with an equal and consecutive term for the deadly weapon. Ex. 44, ECF No. 25.

         The Supreme Court of Nevada affirmed Gonzalas' conviction and affirmed the denial of his state postconviction habeas petition. Ex. 81, ECF No. 27; Ex. 153, ECF No. 29.

         Gonzalas dispatched his federal habeas petition for filing about May 25, 2017. ECF No. 8. This Court granted his Motion for Appointment of Counsel, and Gonzalas filed an Amended Petition through counsel. ECF No. 18. Respondents now move to dismiss ground A(3) as unexhausted. ECF No. 20 at 6-7.

         I. Legal Standards & Analysis

         a. Exhaustion

         Respondents point out that Petitioner has acknowledged that ground A(3) is unexhausted. Id. at 7.

         State prisoners seeking federal habeas relief must comply with the exhaustion rule codified in 28 U.S.C. § 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 courts of the State; or
(B) (i) there is an absence of available State corrective process; or
(ii) circumstances exist that render such process ineffective to protect the ...

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