United States District Court, D. South Carolina, Charleston Division
ORDER AND OPINION
matter comes before the court on Petitioner Bernard
McFadden's (“Petitioner”) pro se
Motion for Reconsideration pursuant to Rule 59(e) of the
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure of the court's September
19, 2016 order adopting Magistrate Judge Mary Gordon
Baker's Report and Recommendation, granting Respondent
David Dunlap's motion to dismiss, and dismissing
Petitioner's 28 U.S.C. § 2241 petition without
prejudice. (ECF No. 21.) For the reasons stated herein, the
Motion for Reconsideration is DENIED.
filed his § 2241 petition on November 16, 2015,
seeking habeas relief. (ECF No. 1.) Specifically, Petitioner
alleges that he lost good time credit following a conviction
in a prison disciplinary hearing in which his requests to
produce witnesses who would testify regarding the underlying
incident were denied, which, he claims, violated his rights
under the Fourteenth Amendment. (Id.) The Magistrate
Judge issued her Report and Recommendation on July 6, 2016,
and, on September 19, 2016, the court accepted the Report and
Recommendation, over Petitioner's objections, and
dismissed Petitioner's § 2241 petition without
prejudice. Petitioner filed the instant motion for
reconsideration on September 28, 2016. (ECF No. 21.)
brings this claim pro se. This court is required to
construe pro se pleadings liberally and hold such
pleadings to a less stringent standard than those drafted by
attorneys. Gordon v. Leeke, 574 F.2d 1147, 1151 (4th
Cir. 1978). This court is charged with liberally construing a
pleading filed by a pro se litigant to allow for the
development of a potentially meritorious claim. Boag v.
MacDougall, 454 U.S. 364, 365 (1982). A court may not
construct a petitioner's legal arguments for him,
Small v. Endicott, 998 F.2d 411 (7th Cir. 1993), nor
is a court required to recognize “obscure or
extravagant claims defying the most concerted efforts to
unravel them.” Beaudett v. City of Hampton,
775 F.2d 1274, 1277 (4th Cir. 1985).
brings this Motion for Reconsideration under Rule 59(e),
which allows a party to file a motion to alter or amend a
judgment within “28 days after the entry of the
judgment.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 59(e). A motion to alter or
amend a judgment is “an extraordinary remedy which
should be used sparingly.” Pac. Ins. Co. v. Am.
Nat'l Fire Ins. Co., 148 F.3d 396, 403 (4th Cir.
1998). It may only be granted for three reasons: (1) to
accommodate an intervening change in controlling law; (2) to
account for new evidence not available at trial; or (3) to
correct a clear error of law or prevent manifest injustice.
Id. A Rule 59(e) motion “may not be used to
relitigate old matters, or to raise arguments or present
evidence that could have been raised prior to the entry of
judgment.” Exxon Shipping Co. v. Baker, 554
U.S. 471, 485 n. 5 (2008) (internal quotation marks omitted).
reviewed Petitioner's motion, the court finds it presents
no new controlling law or new evidence, nor does it point to
any clear legal error. Therefore, the court concludes that
reconsideration of its dismissal order is not
warranted. For these reasons, Petitioner's Motion
for Reconsideration (ECF No. 21) is DENIED.
governing certificates of appealability provides that:
(c)(2) A certificate of appealability may issue… only
if the applicant has made a substantial showing of the denial
of a constitutional right. (c)(3) The certificate of
appealability… shall indicate which specific issue or
issues satisfy the showing required by paragraph (2).
28 U.S.C. § 2253(c). A prisoner satisfies this standard
by demonstrating that reasonable jurists would find this
court's assessment of his constitutional claims debatable
or wrong and that any dispositive procedural ruling by the
district court is likewise debatable. See Miller-El v.
Cockrell, 537 U.S. 322, 336 (2003); Slack v.
McDaniel, 529 U.S. 473, 484 (2000); Rose v.
Lee, 252 F.3d 676, 683 (4th Cir. 2001). In this case,
the legal standard for the issuance of a certificate of
appealability has not been met.
 Prisoner petitions are deemed filed
when they are delivered to prison authorities for mailing to
the court. Houston v. Lack, 487 U.S. 266, 270
 Petitioner's motion also asks the
court to clarify its September 19, 2016 order. (See
ECF No. 21 at 1.) However, it is clear from the motion that
the “clarification” Petitioner seeks is not
further elucidation of the order's effect but, instead, a
reconsideration of whether the state courts had a fair
opportunity to rule on the underlying constitutional claims
Petitioner raised. Because clarification is not ...