United States District Court, D. Vermont
GORDON E. CAMPBELL, Petitioner,
CHITTENDEN PROBATION OFFICE and CHITTENDEN COUNTY STATE'S ATTORNEY, Respondents.
OPINION AND ORDER ADOPTING MAGISTRATE JUDGE'S
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION AND GRANTING RESPONDENTS'
MOTION TO DISMISS, DISMISSING PETITIONER'S PETITION FOR
WRIT OF HABEAS CORPUS, AND DENYING PETITIONER'S MOTION TO
APPOINT COUNSEL (DOCS. 3, 7, 9, & 12)
Christina Reiss, Judge
matter came before the court for a review of the Magistrate
Judge's April 24, 2018 Report and Recommendation ("R
& R") (Doc. 12), in which the Magistrate Judge
recommended that the court grant Respondents Chittenden
Probation Office and Chittenden County State's
Attorney's motion to dismiss self-represented Petitioner
Gordon E. Campbell's petition for writ of habeas corpus
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254 (Docs. 7 & 9) and deny
his motion to appoint counsel (Doc. 3). On May 9, 2018,
Petitioner filed an objection to the R & R, reiterating
his version of the factual bases supporting his petition.
Factual and Procedural Background.
about July 11, 2017, Petitioner filed a petition for writ of
habeas corpus under 28 U.S.C. § 2254, alleging he was
"not allowed to withdraw [his] guilty plea and felt that
[he] was [misrepresented] by [his] attorney." (Doc. 7 at
3.) He further contends that the underlying criminal
proceeding in the State of Vermont Superior Court, Criminal
Division contained Rule 11, Due Process Clause, and Fourth,
Fifth, Sixth, and Fourteenth Amendment violations. He
requests that this court vacate and set aside his state court
conviction and allow him to withdraw his guilty plea.
Conclusions of Law and Analysis.
Standard of Review.
district judge must make a de novo determination of those
portions of a magistrate judge's report and
recommendation to which an objection is made. Fed.R.Civ.P.
72(b); 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1); Cullen v. United
States, 194 F.3d 401, 405 (2d Cir. 1999). The district
judge may accept, reject, or modify, in whole or in part, the
findings or recommendations made by the magistrate judge. 28
U.S.C. § 636(b)(1); accord Cullen, 194 F.3d at
405. A district judge, however, is not required to review the
factual or legal conclusions of the magistrate judge as to
those portions of a reports and recommendation to which no
objections are addressed. Thomas v. Am, 474 U.S.
objection, Petitioner challenges why the State of Vermont
should be permitted to allegedly lie, allegedly lose his
file, and engage in other alleged errors of fact and law
while ignoring his mental health problems and forcing him
into a plea agreement against his will. In support of his
objection, he attaches the plea agreements at issue in his
state case, court records and decisions, and the Pre-sentence
Investigation Report dated December 6, 2013 (the
"PSI") which contains extensive information
regarding his state court offenses identified as "Sexual
Assault-No Consent, Aggravated Assault, [and] Violations of
Conditions of Release." (Doc. 13-8 at l.)
objection, Petitioner does not address the Magistrate
Judge's conclusion that his claims are foreclosed because
they have been adjudicated by the Vermont Supreme Court,
see In re Campbell, 2016 WL 7367551, at *2 (Vt. Dec.
16, 2016), which decision cannot be disturbed by this court
unless that decision was (1) "contrary to, or involved
an unreasonable application of, clearly established Federal
Law, as determined by the Supreme Court of the United
States[, ]" or (2) "based on an unreasonable
determination of the facts in light of the evidence presented
in the State court proceeding." 28 U.S.C. §
2254(d)(1)-(2); see also Williams v. Taylor, 529
U.S. 362, 412 (2000). The vast majority of Petitioner's
challenges pertain to a plea agreement that was vacated in a
proceeding for post-conviction review ("PCR").
fifteen page opinion, the Magistrate Judge carefully
evaluated each of Petitioner's claims and determined that
the relief Petitioner seeks is not available in the
circumstances of this case. The court agrees with that
conclusion and finds it well-reasoned. The court further
agrees that the appointment of counsel would not make it more
likely that Petitioner would prevail or raise different or
better arguments than the wide array of issues he has raised
pro se. See 18 U.S.C. § 3006A(a)(2)(B) (stating
appointment of counsel for indigent petitioners should be
granted if "the interests of justice so
foregoing reasons, the court ADOPTS the Magistrate
Judge's R & R (Doc. 12), GRANTS Respondents'
motion to dismiss (Doc. 9), and DISMISSES Petitioner's
§ 2254 petition (Doc. 7). Petitioner's motion to
appoint counsel is hereby DENIED (Doc. 3).
to Fed. R. App. P. 22(b)(1) and 28 U.S.C. § 2253(c)(2),
the court DENIES Petitioner a certificate of appealability in
this matter because Petitioner has failed to make a