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Kinard v. Johnson

United States District Court, M.D. Tennessee, Nashville Division

January 23, 2015

JAMES PAUL KINARD Petitioner,
v.
DEBRA JOHNSON, Warden Respondent.

MEMORANDUM

ALETA A. TRAUGER, District Judge.

The petitioner, proceeding pro se, is an inmate at the Turney Center Industrial Prison in Only, Tennessee. He brings this action pursuant to 28 U.S.C. ยง 2254 against Debra Johnson, Warden of the facility, seeking a writ of habeas corpus.

I. Background

On September 30, 2008, a jury in Davidson County found the petitioner guilty of the rape of a child (3 counts) and aggravated sexual battery. Docket Entry No.28-1 at pgs.267-268. For these crimes, he received an aggregate sentence of seventy five (75) years in prison. Docket Entry No.27-3 at pgs.20-22.

On direct appeal, the Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals affirmed the convictions. Docket Entry No.27-7. The Tennessee Supreme Court later denied the petitioner's application for further direct review. Docket Entry No.27-11.

In March, 2011, the petitioner filed a pro se petition for state post-conviction relief in the Criminal Court of Davidson County. Docket Entry No.27-12 at pgs.28-51. Following the appointment of counsel, an amendment of the petition, and an evidentiary hearing, the trial court denied the petitioner post-conviction relief. Id. at pgs.149-167.

On appeal, the Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals affirmed the denial of post-conviction relief. Docket Entry No.27-17. Once again, the Tennessee Supreme Court rejected petitioner's application for additional discretionary review. Docket Entry No.27-19.

II. Procedural History

On May 1, 2014, the petitioner initiated the instant action with the pro se filing of a petition for writ of habeas corpus (Docket Entry No.1). The petition contains ten claims for relief. These claims include:

1) the evidence was insufficient to support the convictions;
2) the trial judge abused her discretion by prohibiting evidence "of the victim's prior allegations of sexual abuse made against another adult male and found to be without a basis";
3) it was error for the court to impose maximum consecutive sentences;
4) trial counsel was ineffective
a) because he failed to meet and confer with the petitioner,
b) for failing to develop a meaningful defense,
c) because he failed to investigate "allegations of abuse made by the alleged victim against another adult male",
d) for neglecting to properly prepare for trial,
e) because he failed to properly cross examine the victim,
f) for failing to subpoena witnesses suggested by the ...

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