945 F.2d 1250 (2nd Cir. 1991), 231, Wilson v. Hoke

Docket Nº:231, Docket 90-2497.
Citation:945 F.2d 1250
Party Name:Jon WILSON, Petitioner-Appellant, v. Robert HOKE, Superintendent, Eastern New York Correctional Facility, Respondent-Appellee, District Attorney of Monroe County, Intervenor.
Case Date:October 01, 1991
Court:United States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
 
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Page 1250

945 F.2d 1250 (2nd Cir. 1991)

Jon WILSON, Petitioner-Appellant,

v.

Robert HOKE, Superintendent, Eastern New York Correctional

Facility, Respondent-Appellee,

District Attorney of Monroe County, Intervenor.

No. 231, Docket 90-2497.

United States Court of Appeals, Second Circuit

October 1, 1991

Argued Sept. 26, 1991.

Jane Simkin Smith, Millbrook, New York City, for petitioner-appellant.

Wendy Evans Lehmann, Asst. Dist. Atty., Rochester, N.Y. (Howard R. Relin, Dist. Atty., Monroe County, of counsel), for respondent-appellee and intervenor.

Before LUMBARD, WINTER and ALTIMARI, Circuit Judges.

WINTER, Circuit Judge:

In 1984, petitioner Jon Wilson was convicted of first degree manslaughter (N.Y.Penal Law § 125.20) for the stabbing death of a high school teacher on school premises. Appealing from Judge Telesca's dismissal of his petition for a writ of habeas corpus, Wilson argues that the Monroe County prosecutor discriminatorily exercised peremptory challenges against two black venirepersons in violation of the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. Petitioner bases his claim on Batson v. Kentucky, 476 U.S. 79, 106 S.Ct. 1712, 90 L.Ed.2d 69 (1986). That decision came after Wilson's conviction but before his state appellate brief was filed. Because Batson applies retroactively to cases pending on direct appeal when Batson was decided, see Griffith v. Kentucky, 479 U.S. 314, 107 S.Ct. 708, 93 L.Ed.2d 649 (1987), it is the basis for Wilson's petition.

The voir dire for Wilson's trial was held from April 30 through May 3, 1984. It was not the practice in Monroe County at the time to have a stenographic recording of voir dire proceedings. Although defense counsel could have requested a transcription, he apparently chose not to do so. The only existing record pertinent to petitioner's claim is a colloquy between the trial judge and defense counsel just before the

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trial began. That colloquy began with defense counsel seeking to inform the court of a recent pronouncement by the local district attorney indicating that prosecutors from his office were instructed to give reasons in open court whenever more than one member of a racial group became the subject of a peremptory challenge. The trial judge interrupted counsel, stating, "I am not bound by his statement." The judge then stated, "You noted your objection to the...

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