Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals - Published Opinions

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Smith: Habeas untimely where no GA St. Ct review sought

In Pugh v. Smith, No. 05-12100 (Sept. 29, 2006), the Court held that a habeas petition was untimely. After a first direct appeal of his Georgia conviction, the defendant did not seek review of his Georgia conviction in the Georgia Supreme Court. Consequently, the "conclusion of direct review" – that is, the date on which the one-year period for filing a habeas petition began to run – occurred not at the conclusion of the 90-day period for filing a certiorari petition with the United States Supreme Court. Rather, since no U.S. Supreme Court review was available to Smith (because he never sought review in the Georgia Supreme Court), the period began to run 10 days after the adverse ruling of the Georgia Court of Appeals, that is, on the date after which he could no longer seek review of his conviction in the Georgia Supreme Court.
The Court also found no basis for "equitable tolling."