United States District Court, D. South Carolina
ORDER AND NOTICE
V. HODGES, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
Abdullah Muhammad (“Petitioner”), proceeding pro
se, filed this petition for a writ of habeas corpus pursuant
to 28 U.S.C. § 2241. Pursuant to the provisions of 28
U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(B) and Local Civ. Rule 73.02(B)(2)(c)
(D.S.C.), the undersigned is authorized to review such
petitions for relief and submit findings and recommendations
to the district judge.
Factual and Procedural Background
is a pretrial detainee in the Al-Cannon Detention Center
awaiting disposition of a criminal sexual conduct, second
degree charge. [ECF No. 1 at 3]. Petitioner argues he has
been falsely accused of rape and is being detained against
his will in violation of his constitutional rights.
Id. at 8. Petitioner alleges his trial has been
continued four times, and he claims the solicitor and his
public defender know he is innocent but continue to detain
him to try to force him to accept a plea. Id. at 6,
8. Petitioner claims he has been incarcerated for
approximately two years and his bond has not been reduced.
Id. at 8. Petitioner also states he has a hernia
that needs medical attention. Id. Petitioner seeks
immediate release and other injunctive relief. Id.
Standard of Review
established local procedure in this judicial district, a
careful review has been made of this petition pursuant to the
Rules Governing Section 2254 Proceedings for the United
States District Court,  the Anti-Terrorism and Effective Death
Penalty Act of 1996, Pub. L. No. 104-132, 110 Stat. 1214, and
other habeas corpus statutes. Pro se complaints are held to a
less stringent standard than those drafted by attorneys.
Gordon v. Leeke, 574 F.2d 1147, 1151 (4th Cir.
1978). A federal court is charged with liberally construing a
complaint filed by a pro se litigant to allow the development
of a potentially meritorious case. Erickson v.
Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007). In evaluating a pro se
complaint, the plaintiff's allegations are assumed to be
true. Fine v. City of N.Y., 529 F.2d 70, 74 (2d Cir.
1975). The mandated liberal construction afforded to pro se
pleadings means that if the court can reasonably read the
pleadings to state a valid claim on which the plaintiff could
prevail, it should do so. Nevertheless, the requirement of
liberal construction does not mean that the court can ignore
a clear failure in the pleading to allege facts that set
forth a claim currently cognizable in a federal district
court. Weller v. Dep't of Soc. Servs., 901 F.2d
387, 390-91 (4th Cir. 1990).
filed the instant habeas petition seeking immediate release.
[ECF No. 1]. Pretrial petitions for habeas corpus are
properly brought under 28 U.S.C. § 2241, “which
applies to persons in custody regardless of whether final
judgment has been rendered and regardless of the present
status of the case pending against him.” United
States v. Tootle, 65 F.3d 381, 383 (4th Cir. 1995)
(quoting Dickerson v. Louisiana, 816 F.2d 220, 224
(5th Cir. 1987)). However, federal habeas relief is available
under § 2241 only if exceptional circumstances justify
the provision of federal review. Dickerson, 816 F.2d
Younger v. Harris, 401 U.S. 37 (1971), the Supreme
Court held that a federal court should not equitably
interfere with state criminal proceedings “except in
the most narrow and extraordinary of circumstances.”
Gilliam v. Foster, 75 F.3d 881, 903 (4th Cir. 1996).
The Younger Court noted that courts of equity should
not act unless the moving party has no adequate remedy at law
and will suffer irreparable injury if denied equitable
relief. Younger, 401 U.S. at 43-44 (citation
omitted). From Younger and its progeny, the Fourth
Circuit Court of Appeals (“Fourth Circuit”) has
culled the following test to determine when abstention is
appropriate: “(1) there are ongoing state judicial
proceedings; (2) the proceedings implicate important state
interests; and (3) there is an adequate opportunity to raise
federal claims in the state proceedings.” Martin
Marietta Corp. v. Maryland Comm'n on Human
Relations, 38 F.3d 1392, 1396 (4th Cir. 1994) (citing
Middlesex County Ethics Comm'n v. Garden State Bar
Ass'n, 457 U.S. 423, 432 (1982)).
states he is currently detained pending disposition of state
criminal charges, satisfying the first part of the test. The
second part of the test is met because the Supreme Court has
noted that “the States' interest in administering
their criminal justice systems free from federal interference
is one of the most powerful of the considerations that should
influence a court considering equitable types of
relief.” Kelly v. Robinson, 479 U.S. 36, 49
(1986). The Fourth Circuit has addressed the third criterion
in noting “‘that ordinarily a pending state
prosecution provides the accused a fair and sufficient
opportunity for vindication of federal constitutional
rights.'” Gilliam, 75 F.3d at 904 (quoting
Kugler v. Helfant, 421 U.S. 117, 124 (1975)).
Petitioner can pursue his speedy trial violation, excessive
bail, and ineffective assistance of counsel claims during the
disposition of his criminal charges. Accordingly,
Petitioner's petition is subject to summary dismissal.
See Younger, 401 U.S. at 43-44.
may attempt to correct the defects in his habeas petition by
filing an amended petition by February 5, 2019. Petitioner is
reminded that an amended petition replaces the original
petition and should be complete in itself. See Young v.
City of Mount Ranier,238 F.3d 567, 572 (4th Cir. 2001)
(“As a general rule, an amended pleading ordinarily
supersedes the original and renders it of no legal
effect.”) (citation and internal quotation marks
omitted). If Petitioner files an amended petition, the
undersigned will conduct screening of the amended petition
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A. If ...