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Payne v. Sloan

United States District Court, N.D. Ohio, Eastern Division

January 16, 2020

TYLER SETH DUSTIN PAYNE, Petitioner,
v.
BRIGHAM SLOAN, Warden, Respondent.

          CHRISTOPHER A. BOYKO, JUDGE

          ORDER AND OPINION

          CHRISTOPHER A. BOYKO, SENIOR UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         This matter comes before the Court on Petitioner Tyler Payne's Objections to certain evidentiary and pretrial orders made by Magistrate Judge Thomas Parker. (Doc. 27). For the foregoing reasons, the Court Grants, in part, Petitioner's Objections.

         Background Facts

         The following are the relevant facts to Petitioner's current objections. On February 7, 2018, Petitioner filed a Petition under 28 U.S.C. § 2254 for Writ of Habeas Corpus. (Doc. 1). Petitioner asserted five grounds for relief. Pursuant to Local Rule 72.2, the Court referred the matter to Magistrate Judge Parker for pretrial monitoring and a Report and Recommendation. (Doc. 5).

         The parties moved forward with pretrial briefing before the Magistrate Judge. On November 13, 2018, Petitioner filed his first Motion to Expand the Record under Rule 7 of the Rule Governing § 2254 Cases. (Doc. 18). Petitioner sought to expand the Record with eleven separate items. Petitioner also asked the Court to appoint counsel for the proceeding. (Doc. 19). Respondent filed his Opposition to Petitioner's Motion to Expand on January 18, 2019. (Doc. 24).

         On February 26, 2019, the Magistrate Judge granted, in part, Petitioner's Motion to Expand the Record. (Doc. 25). Relevant for the current Order, the Magistrate Judge allowed an expansion of the Record regarding Items One, Two and Ten. The Magistrate Judge denied expansion of the Record regarding Items Three through Nine and Item Eleven. The Magistrate Judge also denied Petitioner's request for counsel.

         On March 25, 2019, Petitioner's objection to the Magistrate Judge's Order was docketed. (Doc. 27).[1] In his Objection, Petitioner claimed the Magistrate Judge was incorrect in denying the Motion to Expand the Record pertaining to Items Three through Nine and Item Eleven. Petitioner also objected to the Magistrate Judge's denial of his request for counsel and the timeline established for filing his Traverse.

         After Petitioner filed his Objection, the case proceeded forward. Respondent complied with the Magistrate Judge's Order and supplemented the Record. (Docs. 28, 30). Thereafter, the Magistrate Judge issued an Order requiring Petitioner to file a Traverse on or before December 23, 2019. (Non-Doc. Entry, 11/21/2019). Petitioner objected to this Order. (Doc. 32). In his Objection, Petitioner reiterated his previous objections and asked this Court to issue a ruling on his Objections prior to filing a Traverse.[2]

         Standard of Review

         When a magistrate judge makes a ruling on a non-dispositive matter, the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and this Court's Local Rules allow any party to appeal that decision. Fed. R. Civ. Pro. 72(a); Loc. R. 72.3(a). In review of such non-dispositive decisions, the district court can modify or set aside any part of the order that is clearly erroneous or contrary to law. Fed. R. Civ. Pro. 72(a); Loc. R. 72.3(a).

         Analysis

         A. Motion to Expand the Record - Items Three through Nine

         The Magistrate Judge denied in part Petitioner's Motion to Expand the Record. The Magistrate Judge determined that Items Three through Nine sought discovery from third parties, including documents and depositions that were not presented before the state court. Moreover, the Magistrate Judge determined Petitioner was conclusory in his ...


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