United States District Court, E.D. Virginia, Alexandria Division
ANTHONY J. TRENGA UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
Couvington, a Virginia inmate proceeding pro se, has filed a
petition for a writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
§ 2254, challenging the constitutionality of convictions
entered in the Portsmouth Circuit Court. Nos. CR03-1190-01
through -05, -07, CR03-1586-01 through -04 and CR03-1191-02.
Before the Court are the respondent's Motion to Dismiss
the petition and two motions for miscellaneous relief by
November 3, 2003, Couvington pleaded guilty to five counts of
robbery, four counts of unlawful use of a firearm, and two
counts of malicious wounding. He received a sentence of 55
years incarceration with 11 years suspended, and he took no
16, 2012, Couvington filed a petition for a state writ of
habeas corpus in the Portsmouth court, assertedly seeking to
obtain a belated direct appeal of the convictions at issue
here. See Resp. Ex. C, ¶ 9. The court dismissed the
petition on September 4, 2012, on the holding that it was
filed outside the two-year limitations period prescribed in
Va. Code §8.01-654(A)(2). Resp. Ex. D, ¶2.
Couvington attempted to appeal that determination to the
Supreme Court of Virginia, but the appeal was dismissed on
the ground that the notice of appeal was filed untimely.
Couvington v. Clarke. R. No. 130824 (Va. July 26,
2013); Resp. Ex. B.
October 15, 2015, Couvington filed a second state habeas
corpus application in which he raised the following claims:
1. Counsel was ineffective for coercing him to enter the
guilty pleas by misadvising him that he would be admitted to
the Youthful Offender Program.
2. His pleas were not entered intelligently and voluntarily
because counsel misadvised him that he would be admitted to
the Youthful Offender Program.
3. He was not competent to enter the guilty pleas.
4. Counsel was ineffective for failing to move to suppress
incriminating statements petitioner gave to the police.
Resp. Ex. C. By Order entered on March 27, 2017, the
Portsmouth Circuit Court denied the petition on the express
holdings that it was both time-barred pursuant to Va. Code
§8.01- 654(A)(2) and successive in violation of Va. Code
§8.01-654(B)(2), which requires that "[n]o writ
shall be granted on the basis of any allegation the facts of
which petitioner had knowledge of at the time of filing any
previous petition." Resp. Ex. D. Couvington appealed the
circuit court's decision to the Supreme Court of
Virginia, which refused the petition for appeal after finding
"no reversible error in the judgment complained
of." Couvington v. Clarke. R. No. 161061 (Va.
Apr. 11, 2017); Resp. Ex. F.
then turned to the federal forum and filed the instant
application for relief pursuant to §2254 by placing it
into his institution's mailing system on July 14, 2017.
[Dkt. No.1 at 15] In it, he makes the following claims:
1. Counsel provided ineffective assistance by coercing him to
enter an unintelligent guilty plea by misadvising him that he
would be admitted to the Youthful Offender Program.
2. Counsel provided ineffective assistance by failing to move
to suppress petitioner's involuntary ...