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Haynes v. Oregon Board of Parole and Post-Prison Supervision

United States District Court, D. Oregon

April 14, 2017

MICHAEL ROBERT HAYNES, Petitioner,
v.
OREGON BOARD OF PAROLE AND POST-PRISON SUPERVISION, et al., Respondents.

          OPINION AND ORDER

          Garr M. King United States District Judge

         Petitioner, an inmate at the Eastern Oregon Correctional Institution, brings this habeas corpus proceeding pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254, challenging the Oregon Board of Parole and Post-Prison Supervision's holding in a murder review hearing that he is not capable of rehabilitation within a reasonable period of time. For the reasons set forth below, this Court denies Petitioner's Habeas Petition (ECF No. 1).

         BACKGROUND

         On December 19, 1986, Petitioner pled guilty to a single count of Aggravated Murder. Resp't Ex. 101. His conviction arose out of the murders of Petitioner's estranged girlfriend (Sarah Mishler) and her father (Frank Mishler). The trial court sentenced Petitioner to a life sentence, with a minimum thirty-year term of incarceration without the possibility of parole, release on work release, or any form of temporary leave or employment. Id. at 3-4.

         On March 9, 2010, Petitioner filed a petition for a murder review hearing pursuant to Or. Rev. Stat. § 163.105, seeking to change the terms of his confinement to life imprisonment with the possibility of parole, release to post-prison supervision, or work release. Resp't Ex. 105 at 154; see Or. Rev. Stat. § 163.105(2). Prior to the hearing, the Oregon Board of Parole and Post-Prison Supervision (Board) provided Petitioner with a "Hearing Notice & Notice of Rights Packet." Resp't Ex. 105 at 5-10, 157.

         On November 10, 2010, Petitioner appeared before the Board for his review hearing. Resp't Ex. 105 at 155-331. Petitioner was represented by counsel, offered documentary evidence, and testified concerning the details of his crime, his disciplinary record, and the steps he has taken to rehabilitate himself. Id. at 191-310. Petitioner's mother, a Washington County Deputy District Attorney, and victim representative Gary Scrutton also testified.

         At the conclusion of the hearing, the Board issued Board Action Form (BAF) #4 holding that Petitioner "is not likely to be rehabilitated within a reasonable period of time, " and that he "can petition for a change in the terms of confinement in no less than four years.'" Resp't Ex. 105 at 333 (emphasis added). In its formal Order, the Board elaborated that Petitioner (1) is unlikely to conform his conduct to the rules of the community; (2) has an unrealistic and short-sighted attitude towards the role of alcohol in the crime, (3) has not established "a baseline for reformation;" and (4) does not understand the impact of his actions on the lives of the victims' family. Id. at 339-41. The Board explained:

The Board concludes that offender has not met his burden of proof under ORS 163.105 and has not established that he is capable of rehabilitation within a reasonable period of time, and also finds that it is not reasonable to expect that offender would be granted a change in the terms of confinement before four years from the date the petition is denied. The Board considered the factors set out in OAR 255-032-0020 and in OAR 255-062-0016.
1. Offender's disciplinary history is poor. Inmate's recent period of clean conduct is unfortunately overshadowed by a lengthy history of serious institutional misconduct, including multiple incidents of assaultive conduct. Most notable to the Board is that inmate displayed an attitude of hostility, lack of accountability, and minimization towards his disciplinary infractions, as well as a sense of victimization that he appeared to feel as a result of the institutional hearings process. . . .
2. Inmate testified that prior to committing the murders he had been consuming alcohol .... However, inmate is disturbingly indifferent to the role alcohol may play in his life as a trigger for future misconduct. . . .
3. Offender's written submissions and testimony reveal a troubling failure to candidly confront the facts of his crime and come to terms with his responsibility for it.....
Offender's account of the events surrounding the crime lacks credibility. . ..
.... The Board concludes that offender is unable to provide a coherent account of his crime, and to rigorously examine and confront the psychological and emotional factors that led him to commit (or at least facilitated the commission of) the murders. He maintains consistent denial of responsibility and deflection of blame.
4. Finally, the Board finds that offender expressed very little empathy or remorse in ...

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