United States District Court, S.D. Indiana, Indianapolis Division
ENTRY DENYING PETITION FOR WRIT OF HABEAS CORPUS AND
DENYING CERTIFICATE OF APPEALABILITY
Jane Magnus-Stinson, Chief Judge
Indiana jury convicted Antelmo Juarez of murder and criminal
gang activity. He was sentenced in accord with that verdict.
Mr. Juarez now seeks a writ of habeas corpus.
reasons explained in this Entry, Mr. Juarez's petition
for a writ of habeas corpus is denied and
the action is dismissed with prejudice. In addition, the
Court finds that a certificate of appealability should not
Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus
federal habeas corpus statute “permits a federal court
to entertain only those applications alleging that a person
is in state custody ‘in violation of the Constitution
or laws or treaties of the United States.'”
Cullen v. Pinholster, 563 U.S. 170, 181 (2011)
(citing 28 U.S.C. § 2254(a)). “As amended by [the
Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996
(“AEDPA”)], 28 U.S.C. § 2254 sets several
limits on the power of a federal court to grant an
application for a writ of habeas corpus on behalf of a state
prisoner.” Id. “Under the current regime
governing federal habeas corpus for state prison inmates, the
inmate must show, so far as bears on this case, that the
state court which convicted him unreasonably applied a
federal doctrine declared by the United States Supreme
Court.” Redmond v. Kingston, 240 F.3d 590 (7th
Cir. 2001) (citing 28 U.S.C. § 2254(d)(1); Williams
v. Taylor, 529 U.S. 362 (2000); Morgan v.
Krenke, 232 F.3d 562 (7th Cir. 2000)).
state-court decision involves an unreasonable application of
this Court's clearly established precedents if the state
court applies this Court's precedents to the facts in an
objectively unreasonable manner.” Brown v.
Payton, 544 U.S. 131, 141 (2005) (internal citations
omitted). “The habeas applicant has the burden of proof
to show that the application of federal law was
unreasonable.” Harding v. Sternes, 380 F.3d
1034, 1043 (7th Cir. 2004) (citing Woodford v.
Visciotti, 537 U.S. 19, 25 (2002)). In short, the
standard of § 2254(d) is “difficult to meet . . .
because it was meant to be.” Burt v. Titlow,
134 S.Ct. 10, 16 (2013) (internal quotation marks omitted);
see also Cavazos v. Smith, 132 S.Ct. 2, 7-8 (2011)
(per curiam) (citing Supreme Court jurisprudence
“highlighting the necessity of deference to state
courts in § 2254(d) habeas cases”).
first step under § 2254(d)(1) is “to identify the
‘clearly established Federal law, as determined by the
Supreme Court of the United States' that governs the
habeas petitioner's claims.” Marshall v.
Rodgers, 133 S.Ct. 1446, 1449 (2013) (citing
Williams v. Taylor, 529 U.S. at 412; Knowles v.
Mirzayance, 556 U.S. 111, 122 (2009)). In proceeding
with the analysis, a federal habeas court “must
determine what arguments or theories supported, or, [in the
case of an unexplained denial on the merits], could have
supported, the state court's decision; and then it must
ask whether it is possible fair minded jurists could disagree
that those arguments or theories are inconsistent with the
holding in a prior decision of [the Supreme Court].”
Harrington v. Richter, 562 U.S. 86, 102 (2011).
a jury trial, Juarez was found guilty of murder and criminal
gang activity as a Class D felony. His convictions were
affirmed in Juarez v. State, 2010 WL 5122618
(Ind.Ct.App. Dec. 13, 2010)(“Juarez I”),
and the denial of his petition for post-conviction relief was
affirmed in Juarez v. State, 2015 WL 3767090
(Ind.Ct.App.), transfer denied, 37 N.E.3d 493 (Ind.
2015)(“Juarez II”). The evidence
associated with Mr. Juarez's offenses was summarized in
his direct appeal:
On February 18, 2006, fifteen-year-old Juarez and his
nineteen-year-old brother, Oscar Perez, were members of the
Nortenos gang. That evening, as they were leaving their
residence with some of their friends, Perez told Juarez to go
back inside and get the gun, which was a SKS rifle. Juarez
put the rifle into the back of a friend's Dodge Durango.
At some point during the evening, Perez moved the rifle to
another vehicle, which was an Acura.
The group later went to La Bamba, a club in Goshen. While
they were in the club, the group of Nortenos got into a fight
with a group of rival gang members, the Surenos. Security
officers threw the Nortenos out of the club, and the Surenos
followed them to the parking lot. The Surenos left the
parking lot in a Chevrolet Malibu, while the Nortenos
followed in the Durango and the Acura. The Durango pulled up
beside the Malibu, and some Nortenos gang members shot
paintballs at the Malibu. Juarez and Perez were passengers in
the Acura, which was following the Malibu and the Durango.
After seeing that the altercation was continuing, Perez told
Juarez to “hand me the gun real quick, ” and
Juarez handed the rifle to Perez. Tr. p. 880. The Surenos
became upset about the paintballs, and the driver of the
Malibu rammed into the back of the Durango. Perez then rolled
his window down and fired the rifle at the Malibu, killing
fourteen-year-old Rogelio Reyes and wounding Saul Rodriguez.
Juarez I, 2010 WL 5122618, at *1.
of Mr. Juarez's habeas arguments relate to jury
instructions. Final instruction 2 reads as follows:
The undersigned affiant swears that on or about the 19th day
of February, 2006, at the County of Elkhart and State of
Indiana, one ANTELMO JUAREZ, did knowingly assist one Oscar
Eduardo Perez in the killing of another human being, to wit:
Rogelio Reyes, as the said Oscar Eduardo Perez did shoot the
said Rogelio Reyes with a dangerous and deadly weapon,
to-wit: a firearm, and as a direct and proximate result of
the shooting as aforesaid, the said Rogelio Reyes was fatally
wounded and did languish and die in said County and State on
the 19th day of February, 2006 . . . .
instruction 3 reads as follows:
The crime of murder as alleged in Count I is defined by
statute as follows:
A person who knowingly aids, induces or causes another person
in killing another human being commits murder, a felony.
To convict the defendant, the State must have proved each of
the following elements:
6. aided, induced, or ...