United States District Court, W.D. Arkansas, Fort Smith Division
LESLIE E. RAYMOND a/k/a JAMES A. KENNEDY, III PETITIONER
DAN SHUE, Prosecuting Attorney, LINDA WARD, Chief Deputy Prosecuting Attorney, DENORA D. COOMER, Sebastian County Circuit Court Clerk, a/k/a Jane/John Doe, V. HENRY, Deputy Clerk, RACHEL J. SIMS, District Court Clerk RESPONDENTS
MAGISTRATE JUDGE'S REPORT AND
HONORABLE MARK E. FORD UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
the Court is the Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus pursuant
to the “All Writs Act, ” 28 U.S.C. § 1651,
filed by Petitioner, Leslie E. Raymond a/k/a James A.
Kennedy, III (“Raymond”) on June 26, 2018. (ECF
No. 1). Respondent, Denora D. Coomer, filed a Response to
Petition on July 18, 2018. (ECF No. 9). Separate Respondents,
Dan Shue and Linda Ward, filed a Motion to Dismiss on July
20, 2018. (ECF No. 10). Petitioner filed a Response to
Dismissal Request on August 27, 2018. (ECF No. 11).
Supplements to Petitioner's Response to Dismissal Request
were subsequently filed on September 4, 2018 (ECF No. 12),
September 10, 2018 (ECF No. 13), and September 17, 2018 (ECF
No. 15). The matter is ready for Report and Recommendation.
is a federal prisoner at the Loretto Federal Correctional
Institution in Loretto, Pennsylvania serving a sentence
imposed by the United States District Court for the Northern
District of Ohio. (ECF No. 1, pp. 1, 2).
26, 2018, Raymond filed his pro se Petition for a Writ of
Habeas Corpus (the “Petition”) in this Court.
(ECF No. 1). The Petition essentially raises one ground for
relief: that an active warrant issued by the Prosecuting
Attorney for Sebastian County, Arkansas, charging Raymond
with theft of property, prevents him from participating in
Bureau of Prisons (“BOP”) community re-entry,
rehabilitation, and vocational programs. (ECF No. 1, pp. 2,
3). Raymond contends his due process and speedy trial rights
have been violated by the Respondents' refusal to
extradite him, to allow him to plead in absentia, and to
allow the filing in state court of his challenges to the
warrant. (ECF No. 1, pp. 3-5). It is unclear from the
Petition itself what relief Raymond is seeking in this
action, but a liberal reading of his pro se pleading suggests
that he seeks the immediate resolution of the Sebastian
County charge against him, including by way of a writ of
mandamus directing the Circuit Clerk to accept and file
Raymond's submissions to the Circuit Court of Sebastian
County, Arkansas challenging the arrest
Respondent, Denora Coomer (“Coomer”), the Circuit
Clerk of Sebastian County, Arkansas, filed her Response to
the Petition on July 18, 2018. (ECF No. 9). Coomer denies
that she, or any Sebastian County official or employee, has
custody of Raymond, or that she could either order or effect
his release. (ECF No. 9, ¶¶ 2-3). To the extent
that Raymond's Petition is construed as one for a writ of
mandamus, Coomer contends there is no allegation that this
Court possesses jurisdiction over the matter that Raymond
seeks to have filed by Coomer. (ECF No. 9, ¶ 5). Coomer
also alleges that she is not in possession of the documents
Raymond sought to file; that Raymond provides no legal
authority to support his claim that Coomer be directed by
this Court to file pleadings which are neither in her
possession nor associated with an existing case; and, that
she is shielded by sovereign immunity. (ECF No. 9,
20, 2018, the Separate Respondents, Dan Shue
(“Shue”), Sebastian County Prosecuting Attorney,
and Linda Ward (“Ward”), Sebastian County Chief
Deputy Prosecuting Attorney, filed their Motion to Dismiss
the Petition. (ECF No. 10). They acknowledge that an arrest
warrant was issued in 2003 authorizing Raymond's arrest
for felony theft of property, but they contend habeas corpus
is not a remedy available to Raymond under the facts of this
case; that this Court has no jurisdiction to issue a writ of
mandamus to compel state officials to act in a particular
manner; and, that Raymond's claims against them are
barred by the doctrines of prosecutorial immunity, sovereign
immunity, and qualified immunity. (ECF No. 10, ¶¶
filed a Response to Dismissal Request on August 27, 2018, in
which he reiterates his argument that he is trying to get the
arrest warrant resolved “for the sake of being able to
participate in needed FBOP programs and re-entry stuff so I
can be a success when I get out.” (ECF No. 11, p. 1).
pleading entitled Supplemental Information for Consideration
was filed by Raymond on September 4, 2018, to which he
attached various documents in support of his Petition. (ECF
No. 12). These documents include, inter alia, copies of
letters of commendation from prison officials; pleadings sent
by Raymond to the Sebastian County Circuit Clerk to challenge
the arrest warrant; and, letters to, and responses from,
Arkansas officials regarding Raymond's efforts to resolve
the outstanding arrest warrant.
Amendment/Clarification/Supplement of Pleadings was filed by
Raymond on September 10, 2018. (ECF No. 13). He asked that
two additional individuals, Deputy Clerk V. Henry and
District Court Clerk Rachel J. Sims, be added as named
Respondents in this action. (Id. at pp. 1, 10). He
alleges that “without this warrant being adjudicated or
dismissed (even without prejudice), I won't be eligible
for a halfway house, ” and “preparation for the
re-entry programs, is something I need.” (Id.
at p. 2, 3). He argues his right to due process and to
petition the government for the redress of grievances and
states that, “I have grievances and should have the
right to have a judge of that jurisdiction, hear it.”
(Id. at pp. 4-5). He further alleges “[t]he
clerks rejected my filings and therefore, they violated my
rights to due process and to access to the courts.”
(Id. at p. 5). As noted above, Raymond confirms that
“[h]abeas relief is not sought, ” and “THIS
IS AN ACTION REQUESTING THAT THIS COURT ORDER THE PLEADINGS
BE ACCEPTED FOR FILING AND ACTUALLY HEARD BY A JUDGE OF
JURISDICTION, let a judge rule on the case at a state
level.” (Id. at pp. 5-6) (caps and underline
in original). He then argues that pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
§ 1651 usage of an extraordinary writ is appropriate
when no other means are available. To demonstrate that no
other means are available to him, Raymond alleges that he has
written letters to Governor Hutchinson, Attorney General
Rutledge, Respondents Ward and Shue, the clerk, and judges,
and that his motions sent to the clerk were not filed and
instead redirected to Ward and Shue. (Id. at p. 7).
He contends that this Court “does have the right to
order the clerk of the court to accept filings of the
petitioner in Sebastian County Court and direct the Clerk to
then make sure a judge gets them.” (Id. at pp.
Supplemental Allegation Pleading filed on September 17, 2018,
Raymond states once more that “they prevented the
filing or they diverted the filing from being heard by a
judicial officer of the Criminal Court in Fort Smith,
Arkansas, ” and “[t]his happened over a period of
several months while I attempted to get a 15 year old warrant
taken care of so that I could participate and benefit from
programs aimed at completing my rehabilitation and preparing
me for a fair chance at SUCCESSFUL reentry.” (ECF No.
15, p. 1) (caps in original).
reasons discussed below, this Court lacks subject matter
jurisdiction to consider habeas corpus relief. Further,
Raymond has not shown that he has exhausted his state
remedies before filing this action, and he ultimately seeks
relief for something to which he has no constitutional right.
Accordingly, the undersigned recommends the dismissal without
prejudice of Raymond's Petition.
No. Detainer - No. ...