Skip to main content

Are you a legal professional? Visit our professional site

Search for legal issues
For help near (city, ZIP code or county)
Please enter a legal issue and/or a location

Denial of Habeas Relief Reversed Based on Mishandling of Inmate's Appeal Papers

Article Placeholder Image
By FindLaw Staff on April 05, 2010 3:39 PM

In Dorn v. Lafler, No. 08-1594, the Sixth Circuit faced a challenge to a district court's denial of defendant's request for habeas relief claiming ineffective assistance of counsel and denial of an appeal as of right in violation of his constitutional right to access the court. 

As stated in the decision: "Dorn gave prison officials his appeal papers seven days before they had to be received by the court.  This gave the prison a reasonable amount of time within which to mail the papers such that they would be received before his filing deadline." 

Thus, in reversing the district court's denial of habeas relief, the court held that the prison's handling of defendant's papers precluded him from pursuing his statutory right of appeal and under Roe v. Flores-Ortega, 528 U.S. 470 (2000), the defendant is entitled to a presumption of prejudice. 

Related Resource:

Find a Lawyer

More Options