Wood
v.
Clarke

UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE FOURTH CIRCUITMay 22, 2015
602 Fed. Appx. 140 (4th Cir. 2015)

No. 15-6331

05-22-2015

RUSSELL DAVID WOOD, Petitioner - Appellant, v. HAROLD CLARKE, Respondent - Appellee.

Russell David Wood, Appellant Pro Se. Leah A. Darron, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF VIRGINIA, Richmond, Virginia, for Appellee.


UNPUBLISHED Appeal from the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, at Norfolk. Rebecca Beach Smith, Chief District Judge. (2:14-cv-00169-RBS-LRL) Before NIEMEYER, KING, and HARRIS, Circuit Judges. Dismissed by unpublished per curiam opinion. Russell David Wood, Appellant Pro Se. Leah A. Darron, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF VIRGINIA, Richmond, Virginia, for Appellee. Unpublished opinions are not binding precedent in this circuit. PER CURIAM:

Russell David Wood seeks to appeal the district court's order accepting the recommendation of the magistrate judge and dismissing as untimely his 28 U.S.C. § 2254 (2012) petition. The order is not appealable unless a circuit justice or judge issues a certificate of appealability. 28 U.S.C. § 2253(c)(1)(A) (2012). A certificate of appealability will not issue absent "a substantial showing of the denial of a constitutional right." 28 U.S.C. § 2253(c)(2) (2012). When the district court denies relief on the merits, a prisoner satisfies this standard by demonstrating that reasonable jurists would find that the district court's assessment of the constitutional claims is debatable or wrong. Slack v. McDaniel, 529 U.S. 473, 484 (2000); see Miller-El v. Cockrell, 537 U.S. 322, 336-38 (2003). When the district court denies relief on procedural grounds, the prisoner must demonstrate both that the dispositive procedural ruling is debatable, and that the petition states a debatable claim of the denial of a constitutional right. Slack, 529 U.S. at 484-85.

We have independently reviewed the record and conclude that Wood has not made the requisite showing. Accordingly, we deny a certificate of appealability, deny leave to proceed in forma pauperis, and dismiss the appeal. We dispense with oral argument because the facts and legal contentions are adequately presented in the materials before this court and argument would not aid the decisional process.

DISMISSED