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Lovin v. Allbaugh

United States District Court, E.D. Oklahoma

September 18, 2017

GLEN HUGHIE LOVIN, JR., Petitioner,
v.
JOE M. ALLBAUGH, DOC Director, Respondent.

          OPINION AND ORDER

          RONALD A. WHITE, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         This matter is before the Court on Petitioner's petition for a writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254. Petitioner, a pro se prisoner currently incarcerated at Davis Correctional Facility in Holdenville, Oklahoma, challenges his conviction and sentence in Pontotoc County District Court Case No. CF-2010-73 for Endeavoring to Manufacture Methamphetamine, after two or more felony convictions. He sets forth the following grounds for relief:

I. The evidence was not sufficient to prove the offense charged by the State.
II. The improper admission of an irrelevant and prejudicial video that demonstrated the production of methamphetamine deprived Mr. Lovin of a fair trial, requiring a new trial or favorable modification.
III. The prejudice of improper details of Mr. Lovin's legal history inappropriately introduced to the jury through the State's exhibits resulted in an inflated sentence.
IV. Under the facts of the case Mr. Lovin's sentence is excessive and should be modified.
V. Petitioner was denied due process when the preliminary hearing magistrate also conducted Petitioner's jury trial without Mr. Lovin's consent, in violation of the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution and Okla. Stat. tit. 22 § 576.
VI. Petitioner was denied Sixth Amendment effective assistance of trial counsel during plea negotiations.
VII. Petitioner was denied Sixth Amendment effective assistance of appellate counsel when appellate counsel failed to raise the claim of trial counsel's ineffectivness during plea negotiations.

         The respondent concedes that Petitioner has exhausted his state court remedies for the purpose of federal habeas corpus review. The following records have been submitted to the Court for consideration in this matter:

A. Petitioner's direct appeal brief.
B. The State's brief in Petitioner's direct appeal.
C. Summary Opinion affirming Petitioner's judgment and sentence. Lovin v. State, No. F-2012-58 (Okla. Crim. App. Feb. 27, 2013).
D. Petitioner's application for post-conviction relief.
E. Post-conviction findings by the trial court.
F. Petitioner's petition in error to the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals.
G. Order Affirming Denial of Application for Post-Conviction Relief. H. State court record.
I. Transcripts of preliminary hearing and jury trial.

         Standard of Review

         Under the Anti-Terrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act, federal habeas corpus relief is proper only when the state court adjudication of a claim:

(1) resulted in a decision that was contrary to, or involved an unreasonable application of, clearly established Federal law, as determined by the Supreme Court of the United States; or
(2) resulted in a decision that was based on an unreasonable determination of the facts in light of the evidence presented in the State court proceeding.

28 U.S.C. § 2254(d).

         Ground I: Sufficiency of the Evidence

         Petitioner alleges the State failed to meet its burden of proof to sustain his conviction for Endeavoring to Manufacture Methamphetamine. The Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals (OCCA) denied relief on this claim in Petitioner's direct appeal:

. . . Lovin argues that the evidence is insufficient to prove endeavoring to manufacture a controlled dangerous substance. This Court addresses a challenge to the sufficiency of the evidence by viewing the evidence in the light most favorable to the State, accepting all inferences that support the verdict, and asking whether any rational trier of fact could have found guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. Warner v. State, 144 P.3d 838, 863 (Okla. Crim. App. 2006) (citing Spuehler v. State, 709 P.2d 202, 203-04 (Okla. Crim. App. 1985)).
The elements of Endeavoring to Manufacture Methamphetamine are: 1) knowingly; 2) endeavoring; 3) to manufacture; 4) the controlled dangerous substance of methamphetamine. Okla. Stat. tit. 63, § 2-408; OUJI-CR (2d) 6-3B. “Endeavoring means any effort to do or accomplish the evil purpose that the law was enacted to prevent.” OUJI-CR (2d) 6-16. The evidence introduced by the State, including purchases made by Lovin at Wal-Mart on January 8, 2010; the video depiction of the methamphetamine manufacturing process in conjunction with the explanatory testimony of Agent Dean; the admissions of Lovin; and the evidence found in the back of Lovin's car on February ...

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