Willamette Law Online

Oregon Court of Appeals


ListPreviousNext


Barrett v. Williams

Summarized by: 

Date Filed: 12-21-2011
Case #: A140542
Schuman, P.J. for the Court; Wollheim, J; & Nakamoto, J.
Full Text Opinion: http://www.publications.ojd.state.or.us/A140542.pdf

Habeas Corpus: A petition for habeas corpus must state more than mere conclusions; it must allege with facts which would entitle the plaintiff to habeas corpus relief. Representation by counsel in tort or post-conviction cases is not a constitutional right.

Barrett sought a writ of habeas corpus, alleging that prison officials were opening and reading mail sent to him by his attorney. The legal mail pertained to a tort action that Barrett was preparing against prison officials for assault and promotion of assault against him. According to Barrett, this violated several of his state and federal constitutional rights. The trial court denied the petition. The Court of Appeals noted that Barrett alleged no facts and made no legal arguments to support his allegations. Further, a petition for habeas corpus must state more than mere conclusions; "it must allege with particularity facts which, if true, would entitle the plaintiff to habeas corpus relief." Additionally, the Court noted that representation by counsel in tort or post-conviction cases is "not a constitutional right at all, much less a fundamental one." Affirmed.