United States District Court, D. South Carolina, Beaufort Division
TIMOTHY M. CAIN UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
January 30, 2014, Terriel Lashawn Mack, a state prisoner
proceeding pro se, petitioned for a writ of habeas
corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254, seeking relief from
his conviction for murder. (ECF No. 1). Respondent filed
a return and memorandum of law in support of summary
judgment. (ECF No. 20).
accordance with 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1) and Local Civil
Rule 73.02, D.S.C., this matter was referred to a magistrate
judge for pretrial handling. On October 9, 2014, having been
advised that Mack had filed a successive application for
post-conviction relief in state court, the magistrate judge
entered an order staying this federal habeas action. (ECF No.
38 at 4). The magistrate judge noted that Aiken v.
Byars, 765 S.E.2d 572 (S.C. 2014), was pending before
the South Carolina Supreme Court and presented the issue of
what protections are required before a court can impose a
life sentence without the possibility of parole upon a
juvenile offender. See id. at 578 (“[B]efore a
life without parole sentence is imposed upon a juvenile
offender, he must receive an individualized hearing where the
mitigating hallmark features of youth are fully
April 25, 2016, Mack filed a motion in state court to be
resentenced in light of Aiken. (ECF No. 52-1). On
May 20, 2016, the South Carolina Supreme Court directed that
the trial court consider Mack's motion for resentencing
in light of Aiken. (ECF No. 53-1). On July 26, 2016,
the magistrate judge entered a text order indicating that the
case would be held in abeyance until Mack was resentenced and
that upon resentencing, the Court intended to dismiss the
habeas action “without prejudice, in order for
Petitioner to pursue his state court remedies prior to the
federal court entertaining his federal habeas
petition.” (ECF No. 54).
March 20, 2019, Mack was finally resentenced. (ECF No. 71).
The state court applied Aiken and imposed a sentence
of life imprisonment. (ECF No. 71-1 at 4). The magistrate
judge then issued a Report and Recommendation
(“Report”) recommending that the court dismiss
Mack's habeas petition without prejudice. (ECF No. 72 at
2). The magistrate judge noted that “based upon the
Petitioner's resentencing, his one year statute of
limitation period to file his federal habeas [claim] is reset
and begins to run from his resentencing date.”
Id. Attached to the Report was a Notice advising
Mack of his right to file “specific written
objections” to the Report, the applicable time limit
for filing objections, and the potential consequences for
failing to file specific objections. Id. at 3. Mack
filed a response affirmatively requesting that “this
court dismiss this matter without prejudice so that the
petitioner can pursue his state court remedies prior to the
federal court entertaining his federal habeas
petition.” (ECF No. 75 at 1). Mack also filed an
additional response expressly confirming that he “has
no objections” to the Report. (ECF No. 77).
Report has no presumptive weight and the responsibility to
make a final determination in this matter remains with this
court. See Mathews v. Weber, 423 U.S. 261, 270-71
(1976). In the absence of objections, this court is not
required to provide an explanation for adopting the Report.
See Camby v. Davis, 718 F.2d 198, 199 (4th Cir.
1983). Rather, “in the absence of a timely filed
objection, a district court need not conduct a de novo
review, but instead must only satisfy itself that there is no
clear error on the face of the record in order to accept the
recommendation.” Diamond v. Colonial Life &
Accident Ins. Co., 416 F.3d 310, 315 (4th Cir. 2005)
(quoting Fed.R.Civ.P. 72 advisory committee's note).
careful and thorough review of the record under the
appropriate standards, as set forth above, the court adopts
the magistrate judge's Report (ECF No. 72), which is
incorporated herein by reference. Accordingly, Mack's
habeas action (ECF No. 1) is hereby
DISMISSED without prejudice.
a certificate of appealability will not issue to a prisoner
seeking habeas relief absent “a substantial showing of
the denial of a constitutional right.” 28 U.S.C. §
2253(c)(2). A prisoner satisfies this standard by
demonstrating that reasonable jurists would find both that
his constitutional claims are debatable and that any
dispositive procedural rulings by the district court are also
debatable or wrong. See Miller-El v. Cockrell, 537
U.S. 322, 336 (2003); Rose v. Lee, 252 F.3d 676, 683
(4th Cir. 2001). In this case, the court finds that the
petitioner has failed to make a substantial showing of the
denial of a constitutional right. Accordingly, the court
declines to issue a certificate of appealability.
IS SO ORDERED.
 This was his filing date pursuant to
Houston v. Lack, 487 U.S. 266, 270-276 (1988). (ECF