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Glisson v. Hooks

United States District Court, W.D. North Carolina, Asheville Division

May 10, 2019

MACK CHASON GLISSON, Petitioner,
v.
ERIC A. HOOKS, MIKE SLAGLE, Respondents.

          ORDER

          MAX O. COGBURN JR. UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         THIS MATTER is before the Court upon Petitioner Mack Chason Glisson's Motion to Proceed In Forma Pauperis (“IFP”) (Doc. No. 2), Motion to Seal (Doc. No. 5), and Motion to hold these proceedings in abeyance pending exhaustion of his state remedies (Doc. No. 6). Petitioner is represented by Christopher John Heaney of North Carolina Prisoner Legal Services (“NCPLS”).

         I. BACKGROUND

         Petitioner is a prisoner of the State of North Carolina, who, on December 18, 2014, was convicted of first-degree murder after a jury trial in Buncombe County Superior Court. He was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole. (§ 2254 Pet. 1-2, Doc. No. 1.)

         On March 21, 2017, the North Carolina Court of Appeals issued an unpublished opinion finding no error in the judgment. State v. Glisson, 797 S.E.2d 381 ( N.C. Ct. App. 2017) (Table). Petitioner did not seek discretionary review of the appellate court's decision in the North Carolina Supreme Court. (§ 2254 Pet. 2.)

         Petitioner, through counsel, filed a post-conviction motion for appropriate relief (“MAR”) in the Buncombe County Superior Court on April 23, 2018; it was denied on September 26, 2018, without an evidentiary hearing. (§ 2254 Pet. 3-4.) Petitioner filed a petition for writ of certiorari in the North Carolina Court of Appeals on March 28, 2019, seeking review of the denial of his MAR. (§ 2254 Pet. 13.)

         Contemporaneously with the filing of his state certiorari petition, Petitioner filed a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus, 28 U.S.C. § 2254, in this Court. (Doc. No. 1.) He also filed the three Motions that are the subject of this Order.

         According to Petitioner, the North Carolina Court of Appeals allowed his certiorari petition on May 2, 2019, vacated the order denying the MAR, and remanded the case to the trial court for further proceedings. (Status Update, Doc. No. 7 (citing State v. Glisson, P19-213 ( N.C. Ct. App. May 2, 2019)). Petitioner's MAR is now pending before the Superior Court of Buncombe County. (Id.)

         II. IFP MOTION

         Federal law requires a petitioner seeking habeas review of his state conviction and/or sentence in federal district court to pay a $5.00 filing fee or be granted leave to proceed without prepayment of fees and costs. See 28 U.S.C. §§ 1914, 1915(a).[1] According to his IFP application, Petitioner does not receive income from any source, including from gifts. (Doc. No. 2 at 1.) He lists, as a debt, $5, 000.00 in restitution he must pay for his wife's funeral expenses. (Doc. No. 2 at 2.) Petitioner's trust fund account statement shows that since August 28, 2018, frequent deposits ranging from $10.00 to $60.00 have been made to his trust fund account. (Trust Fund Acct. Stmt., Doc. No. 2 at 3-9.) The Court is unable to determine from the statement whether he has been paying restitution while incarcerated.

         Notwithstanding Petitioner's misrepresentation about non-receipt of income in the form of gifts, the Court shall grant his IFP Motion. It is unclear from the materials provided whether Petitioner had the means to pay the $5.00 filing fee when he filed his habeas Petition.

         III. MOTION TO SEAL

         In this Motion, Petitioner seeks

to seal a reference list describing redactions of an unsealed exhibit (Exhibit A - Redacted) submitted in support of his petition for writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. ยง 2254, a sealed exhibit submitted in support of that petition (Exhibit B), an unredacted memorandum in support of the petition, ...

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