United States District Court, E.D. New York
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
N. VITALIANO, United States District Judge
April 14, 2017, petitioner Jermaine Walker, appearing pro
se and currently detained at the Anna M. Kross Center on
Rikers Island, filed a petition for a writ of habeas corpus,
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241, challenging his pending
prosecution in Brooklyn Supreme Court, under Kings County
docket number 2016KN070509. See (Petition 2, ECF No.
1). The petition seeks Walker's immediate release and the
dismissal of all charges against him. (Id. at 8). On
June 1, 2017, petitioner paid the statutory filing fee to
commence this action. For the reasons that follow, the
petition is dismissed without prejudice.
complains that his current detention violates the United
States Constitution, but he provides no facts that show
grounds for relief. (Id. at 6-9). The Court takes
judicial notice that petitioner was arrested and is being
held on various state criminal charges, including attempted
murder. See N.Y.C. Dep't of Corr., Inmate Lookup
(last visited June 5, 2017) (petitioner identified by his
book & case number); N.Y. State Unified Ct. Sys.,
attorney/Attorney Welcome, (last visited June 5,
2017) (petitioner identified by his name and indictment
numbers: Nos. 01180/2015 and 10053/2016).
Judiciary Act of 1789, ch. 20, § 14, 1 Stat. 73, 81-82,
conferred jurisdiction upon federal courts to issue writs of
habeas corpus to prisoners in the custody of the United
States. See McCleskey v. Zant, 499 U.S. 467, 477-78,
111 S.Ct. 1454, 1461, 113 L.Ed.2d 517 (1991). That grant of
jurisdiction is presently codified at 28 U.S.C. § 2241,
which permits federal courts to entertain habeas corpus
petitions from federal prisoners "in custody in
violation of the Constitution or laws or treaties of the
United States." 28 U.S.C. § 2241(c)(3).
"Section 2241 is [also] available to state pre-trial
detainees challenging their custody as being in violation of
the Constitution or federal law." Robinson v.
Sposato, No. 11-CV-191, 2012 WL 1965631, at *2 (E.D.N.Y.
May 29, 2012).
grant of authority to federal courts to issue a writ of
habeas corpus to an aggrieved petitioner in state custody
must be construed, however, with full respect for the nature
of our federal system and its recognition of the separate
sovereignty of each state. That is why the authority granted
by § 2241 cannot be used to "derail... a pending
state proceeding by [permitting a petitioner] to litigate
constitutional defenses [to state charges] prematurely in
federal court." Braden v. 30th Judicial Or. Ct. of
Ky., 410 U.S. 484, 493, 93 S.Ct. 1123, 1129, 35 L.Ed.2d
443 (1973); see also Sprint Commc'ns, Inc. v.
Jacobs, 134 S.Ct. 584, 591, 187 L.Ed.2d 505 (2013)
(reiterating that, absent unusual circumstances, the
abstention doctrine developed in Younger v. Harris,
401 U.S. 37, 91 S.Ct. 746, 27 L.Ed.2d 669 (1971),
"preclude[s] federal intrusion into ongoing state
criminal prosecutions"); Allen v. Maribal, No.
11-CV-2638, 2011 WL 3162675, at *1 (E.D.N.Y. July 25, 2011).
Walker seeks his immediate release from state custody and the
dismissal of the state court criminal charges currently
pending against him. But, he provides no facts or
circumstances that would militate against the abstention of
the exercise of habeas jurisdiction that ordinarily controls
in cases like this. There might come a time at the conclusion
of Walker's state prosecution when federal habeas relief
is appropriate, but nothing in the petition even remotely
suggests that the time is now. As such, this Court will
abstain from intervening in petitioner's ongoing state
court criminal prosecution.
Walker's application for a writ of habeas corpus,
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241, is dismissed without
this petition presents no "substantial showing of the
denial of a constitutional right, " a certificate of
appealability shall not issue. 28 U.S.C. § 2253(c).
is advised to raise any concerns regarding the proceedings in
his ongoing criminal case with his defense attorney and with
the appropriate state court.
petitioner paid the filing fee to commence this action, the
Court certifies, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a)(3),
that any appeal from this order would not be taken in good
faith and therefore in forma pauperis status is
denied for the purpose of an appeal. Coppedge v. United
States, 369 U.S. 438, 444-45, 82 S.Ct. 917, 920-21, 8
L.Ed.2d 21 (1962).
Clerk of Court is directed to enter judgment dismissing
Walker's petition without prejudice and to close ...