The opinion of the court was delivered by: Michael A. Telesca United States District Judge
On July 31, 2005 petitioner Daniel Hines ("Hines") filed a pro se petition seeking a writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254.
FACTUAL BACKGROUND AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
By Indictment Number 2002-23, filed on January 10, 2002, Hines was charged with Burglary in the Second Degree and other crimes. By superseding Indictment Number 2002-136, filed on May 16, 2002, Hines was charged with two counts of Burglary in the Second Degree (Penal Law § 140.25(2)); Rape in the First Degree (Penal Law § 130.35(1)); Sexual Abuse in the First Degree (Penal Law § 130.65(1)); Assault in the Second Degree (Penal Law § 120.05(2)); and Assault in the Third Degree (Penal Law § 120.00(1)). A Huntley hearing was held on May 17, 2002.*fn1 On May 21, 2002, the court issued a written decision declining to suppress any of Hines' December 4th or 6th statements. See December 5, 2001 City of Elmira Police Department Supporting Deposition of Daniel Hines, attached as Exhibit B to Respondent's Declaration in Opposition to Petition for a Writ of Habeas Corpus.
On December 20, 2002, following a jury trial, Hines was found guilty of Burglary in the Second Degree (Penal Law § 140.25(2)); Rape in the First Degree (Penal Law § 130.35(1)); Sexual Abuse in the First Degree (Penal Law § 130.65(1)); Assault in the Second Degree (Penal Law § 120.05(2)); and Assault in the Third Degree (Penal Law § 120.00(1)). On March 3, 2003, Hines was sentenced to various concurrent sentences, the longest of which was for a term of seventeen and one-half years imprisonment. On July 1, 2004, Hines' conviction was unanimously affirmed by the Appellate Division, Third Department, and leave to appeal to the New York State Court of Appeals was denied. People v. Hines, 9 A.D.3d 507, 780 N.Y.S.2d 419 (3d Dept. 2004), lv. denied, 3 N.Y.3d 707, 785 N.Y.S.2d 34 (2004). Hines is currently incarcerated at the Coxsackie Correctional Facility pursuant to his judgment of conviction.
The conviction stems from two incidents that occurred at the home of the victim, on December 4 and 6, 2001. The victim met Hines in late 2000 or early 2001 while she worked at a grocery store in Chemung County and, thereafter, they often spent time together. (T. 93-94). The victim stated that the relationship had never involved sexual intimacy and that, on December 4, 2001, when she had rebuffed Hine's sexual advances, he became angry and choked her, leaving bruises on her neck and arms. (T. 108). While Hines acknowledged choking the victim on December 4, he related that they had been involved sexually since shortly after they first met and that his actions occurred later when the victim made threats against his wife and children. (T. 668-69, 657-58, 664). The victim sought medical attention and she spoke to officers in the Elmira City Police Department regarding the incident. (T. 155-56, 117). Hines was contacted by police by phone on December 4 and 5, 2001 and returned the phone calls, agreeing to voluntarily go to the police station to discuss the incident. Hines gave a statement on December 5 in which he contended that he "snapped" because of the victim's threats against his children. He was not detained following his interview with the police. (T. 672-73; December 5, 2001 Petitioner's statement to the police, attached as Exhibit A to Respondent's Declaration in Opposition to Petition for a Writ of Habeas Corpus).
According to the victim, she awoke on the morning of December 6, 2001 to find Hines in her bedroom holding a novelty baseball bat. (T. 117-19). He struck her twice on the head with the bat before she could cover her head with a pillow, and he continued striking her through the pillow. (T. 119). Hines expressed anger because the victim had reported the December 4 incident to police.
(T. 120). Hines produced a handgun and ordered the victim to remove her underwear. (T. 121). Hines, who was wearing a condom, then forcibly engaged in intercourse with her. (T. 122). He escorted the victim downstairs so he could check a calendar to determine whether her school-aged brother would be home soon. (T. 122-23). Once downstairs, Hines began rubbing his penis against the victim's legs until he ejaculated, this time without a condom. (T. 127-28). Hines attempted to wipe all the semen off the victim's legs. Id. Hines threatened the victim with harm if she told anyone about the incident and then exited the premises. (T. 128). With respect to the events of December 6, Hines denied any involvement and maintained his innocence. (T. 383). The victim contacted police on December 6, an investigation was commenced and she was transported to a hospital, where a rape kit was administered. (T. 536). Semen found on her thigh was eventually linked, through DNA testing, to Hines. (T. 623, 637-39).
On the evening of December 6, 2001, Hines called the police station seeking to speak with the officer who had interviewed him regarding the December 4 incident. (T. 679). Hines stated on the telephone that he was being falsely accused of rape and also inquired whether there was a warrant for his arrest. Id. The officer who took the call told him he would check to see if there was a warrant. Id. Upon speaking with other officers, it was decided that Hines would be told there was an arrest warrant, even though one had not yet been issued. (T. 374). Hines called back a short time later and the officer told him there was a warrant for his arrest. Hines responded that he would walk to the police station, which he then did. (T. 376). Upon arriving at the station, Hines was read his Miranda rights. (T. 382). Hines then spoke with investigators and maintained his innocence regarding any events of December 6. (T. 385). He was, however, arrested later that evening.
In his pro se petition for a writ of habeas corpus, Hines claims that: (1) the County Court erred by refusing to suppress his December 6th statements which were obtained in violation of his Fourth Amendment rights; (2) the guilty verdict on the December 6th offenses, Counts 2-5, was not supported by legally sufficient evidence, or at least was against the weight of the evidence; (3) the evidence was legally insufficient to sustain his conviction for Count 5, Second Degree Assault; and (4) his sentence was ...