United States District Court, D. South Carolina, Anderson/Greenwood Division
PATRICK MICHAEL DUFFY, United States District Judge
matter is before the Court on Petitioner Martin
Richardson's motion to reconsider the Court's June
16, 2017 order denying his 28 U.S.C. § 2241 petition
(ECF Nos. 26 & 22). For the following reasons, the Court
denies the motion.
AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
§ 2241 proceeding, Richardson seeks relief from a prison
sentence that a federal court in Wisconsin imposed upon him.
He contends his sentence was improper because it is based on
the sentencing court's allegedly erroneous determination
that he was a career offender under the United States
filed his pro se § 2241 petition in March 2017.
In accordance with Local Civil Rule 73.02(B)(2)(c), the
petition was referred to a magistrate judge for initial
review. On April 6, United States Magistrate Judge Jacquelyn
D. Austin issued a report and recommendation (“R &
R”), in which she concluded Richardson's petition
should be summarily dismissed, without prejudice, because his
claim is not cognizable under § 2241 and the
“savings clause” in 28 U.S.C. § 2255(e) does
not allow him to bring his claim under § 2241. (ECF No.
original deadline to file objections to the R & R was
April 23. At Richardson's request, the Court extended the
deadline to May 24. He then asked for a second thirty-day
extension. The Court granted a twenty-day extension, making
the deadline June 13. That date passed without Richardson
filing any objections. Hearing nothing from Richardson, and
seeing no clear error in the R & R, the Court issued an
order on June 16 adopting the R & R and ordering that
Richardson's § 2241 petition be dismissed without
prejudice. The Court issued a judgment that same day.
days later, Richardson completed and filed his objections to
the R & R. Then, on June 21, Richardson sent the
Clerk of Court a letter stating that he had received the
Court's June 16 order and that he had believed his
objections were not due until June 23. He therefore asked
that his objections be construed as a motion to alter or
amend the judgment under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure
Court will not analyze Richardson's untimely objections
as true objections to the R & R. It has no obligation to
do so. See Darby v. South Carolina, 355 F.App'x
751, 751 (4th Cir. 2009) (per curiam). Indeed, Richardson has
not asked the Court to consider them as such.
the Court will accommodate Richardson's request to
construe his untimely objections as a Rule 59(e) motion.
Reconsideration of a judgment is an extraordinary remedy that
should be used sparingly. Pac. Ins. Co. v. Am. Nat'l
Fire Ins. Co., 148 F.3d 396, 403 (4th Cir. 1998). A
motion to alter or amend a judgment may be granted for only
three reasons: (1) to follow an intervening change in
controlling law; (2) to account for new evidence not
previously available; or (3) to correct a clear error of law
or prevent manifest injustice. Id.
has not pointed to any changes in controlling law and he has
not pointed to any newly available evidence. He spends the
first half of his motion arguing the merits of his claim.
Rearguing the merits is not an appropriate use of Rule 59(e),
especially where the Court disposed of the case on grounds
independent of the merits. See Register v. Cameron &
Barkley Co., 481 F.Supp.2d 479, 481 n.2 (D.S.C. 2007).
spends the second half of his motion contending that not
applying the savings clause here amounts to an
unconstitutional suspension of the writ of habeas corpus.
That argument comes too late. In his § 2241 petition,
Richardson argued at length why the savings clause applied
and, therefore, why he should be able to present his claim
under § 2241. However, he did not include his
constitutional contention in that argument. He may not do so
now. See Register 481 F.Supp.2d at 481 n.2
(“Rule 59(e) motions may not be used to raise arguments
which could have been raised prior to the issuance of the