United States District Court, D. South Carolina, Rock Hill Division
F. Anderson, Jr. United States District Judge.
matter is before the Court on multiple motions by Petitioner
Randolph Ashford (“Petitioner”) in relation to
his habeas corpus petition pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254.
Petitioner is an inmate at the Broad River Correctional
Institution in Columbia, South Carolina. (ECF No. 54).
Petitioner, proceeding pro se and in forma
pauperis, filed a petition for a writ of habeas corpus
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254 on May 8, 2018. (ECF Nos.
1, 5). Thereafter, in accordance with 28 U.S.C. §
636(b)(1)(B) and Local Civil Rule 73.02(B)(2)(c) (D.S.C.),
the case was referred to a Magistrate Judge for review. (ECF
filed a Motion for Entry of Default, which was denied. (ECF
No. 15). Thereafter, Respondent Michael Stephan
(“Respondent”) filed a Motion for Summary
Judgment. (ECF No. 22). Petitioner moved for extension of
time to respond, which was granted, but his second and third
motions for extension were denied by the Magistrate Judge.
(ECF Nos. 27, 32, and 35). Thereafter, Petitioner responded
to Respondent's Motion for Summary Judgment, Respondent
replied, and the Magistrate Judge subsequently filed a Report
and Recommendation (“Report”) based on the briefs
of the parties. (ECF Nos. 37, 44, and 45). Petitioner also
made multiple motions during this timeframe, which the Court
addresses in this Order.
following motions by Petitioner are reviewed and decided in
this Order: Motion for Extension of Time to File Objections,
(ECF No. 52); Motion for Extension of Time to Respond to
Motion for Summary Judgment, (ECF No. 48); Motion for Copies,
(ECF No. 49); Motion for Advisory Opinion, (ECF No. 50); and
Motion to Stay Proceedings, (ECF No. 54).
Motion for Extension of Time to File Objections.
filed his First Motion to Enlarge Time to File an Objection
to the Court Report and Recommendation (which the Court
refers to as “Motion for Extension of Time to File
Objections”) to the Magistrate Judge's Report. (ECF
No. 52). His Objections were due January 23, 2019. (ECF No.
45 at 28). In spite of his motion, Petitioner filed
Objections on January 22, 2019, (ECF No. 53), and the filing
of his Objections renders his Motion for Extension of Time to
File Objections moot. Nevertheless, the Court did not address
Petitioner's motion until the present order, which has
been filed after the filing deadline for Petitioner's
Objections, and it appears that Petitioner was attempting to
file what he was able to compose within the established
deadline constraints. The Court aims to honor its intention
to grant Petitioner's motion and, thus, Petitioner is
given thirty (30) additional days beyond the original
deadline to refile or supplement his Objections to the
Report. The Court grants Petitioner's Motion for
Extension of Time to File Objections, resulting in a new
deadline of February 22, 2019 to file his Objections to the
Motion for Extension of Time to Respond to Motion for Summary
addition to filing a Motion for Extension of Time to File
Objections, Petitioner also filed a document entitled
“Rule 60. Relief from Judgment or Order” (which
the Court construes, and refers to, as “Motion for
Extension of Time to Respond to Motion for Summary
Judgment”). (ECF No. 48). However, prior to issuing the
Report, the Magistrate Judge granted Petitioner a lengthy
deadline extension that afforded him ample time in which to
file his response to Respondent's Motion for Summary
Judgment. (ECF No. 27). Additionally, despite
Petitioner's allegation that he cannot access the jail
law library in order to conduct research, his Response to
Respondent's Motion for Summary Judgment and Objections
to the Report contain many citations to statutes and case
law, indicating he has had the opportunity to conduct
research after all. (ECF Nos. 37 and 53). Moreover,
Petitioner's arguments relating to Respondent's
Motion for Summary Judgment can be properly articulated in
Petitioner's Objections to the Report. Therefore, the
Court denies Petitioner's Motion for Extension of Time to
Respond to Motion for Summary Judgment. (ECF No. 48).
Motion for Copies.
also filed a letter with the Court in which he requested what
he described as “a copy of my exhibits in which is my
discovery I sent to you” (“Motion for
Copies”). (ECF No. 49). Petitioner argues that he needs
free copies of the aforementioned documents in order to
“proceed to the next court as challenging my conviction
(Freedom).” (ECF No. 49).
indigent defendant possesses a right to receive a copy of the
trial court record or a transcript of his prior proceedings
when necessary for an “effective” defense at
trial or direct appeal. Lind v. Ballard, No.
2:14-CV-26284, 2016 WL 11483825, at *9 (S.D. W.Va. Apr. 27,
2016) (citing Britt v. North Carolina, 404 U.S. 226,
227 (1971)). “Fees for transcripts furnished . . . in
habeas corpus proceedings to persons allowed to sue, defend,
or appeal in forma pauperis, shall be paid by the United
States out of moneys appropriated for those purposes.”
28 U.S.C.A. § 753 (West).
If on any application for a writ of habeas corpus an order
has been made permitting the petitioner to prosecute the
application in forma pauperis, the clerk of any court of the
United States shall furnish to the petitioner without cost
certified copies of such documents or parts of the record on
file in his office as ...