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McKee v. Key

United States District Court, W.D. Washington, Seattle

July 9, 2018

JEFFREY ROBERT MCKEE, Plaintiff,
v.
JAMES KEY, Defendant.

          ORDER

          JOHN C. COUGHENOUR, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         This matter comes before the Court on Petitioner's objections (Dkt. No. 28) to United States Magistrate Judge Brian A. Tsuchida's Report and Recommendation (Dkt. No. 27). Having thoroughly considered the briefing and the relevant record, the Court finds oral argument unnecessary and hereby OVERRULES Petitioner's objections (Dkt. No. 28) and ADOPTS Judge Tsuchida's Report and Recommendation (Dkt. No. 27).

         I. BACKGROUND

         Petitioner Jeffrey McKee is currently incarcerated at the Airway Heights Corrections Center, in Airway Heights Washington. (Dkt. No. 21 at 1.) On January 8, 2018, McKee filed an amended petition for writ of habeas corpus under 28 U.S.C. § 2254 challenging his 2005 conviction for two counts of first degree rape while armed with a firearm. (Id. at 6.) McKee's amended petition raises two grounds for relief:

1. Denial of his right to a public trial when the trial judge closed the courtroom during voir dire.
2. Ineffective assistance of counsel when McKee's appellate attorney failed to raise the public-trial claim on direct appeal.

(Dkt. No. 21 at 16, 19.) Judge Tsuchida issued a report and recommendation concluding that the Court should deny both of McKee's claims for relief, deny his request for an evidentiary hearing, and deny a certificate of appealability. (Dkt. No. 27 at 20.) McKee filed objections to Judge Tsuchida's report and recommendation (Dkt. No. 28).

         II. DISCUSSION

         A. Standard of Review

         Objections to a magistrate judge's report and recommendations are reviewed de novo. 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1); accord, Rule 8(b), Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases. A federal habeas court will defer to a state court's decision with respect to any claim that was adjudicated on the merits unless the state court's adjudication:

(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)(1), (2).

         B. ...


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