from the District Court for Lancaster County: STEVEN D.
J. Dornan, of Dornan, Lustgarten & Troia, P.C., L.L.O.,
J. Peterson, Attorney General, and Kimberly A. Klein for
C.J., WRIGHT, CONNOLLY, MILLER-LERMAN, CASSEL, STACY, and
Neb. 561] Heavican, C.J.
Abdulkadir appeals from the district court's order
denying his postconviction motion to vacate and set aside his
convictions without an evidentiary hearing. Abdulkadir
alleged that his convictions for the second degree murder of
Michael Grandon and for use of a deadly weapon to commit a
felony should be vacated because his trial counsel failed to
call two witnesses Abdulkadir claimed would have testified in
his favor. We affirm.
the second time Abdulkadir has appealed to this court. In
2013, we affirmed his convictions on direct
appeal. Abdulkadir then filed a postconviction
motion to vacate and set aside his convictions in the
district court because his trial counsel (who also served as
counsel on direct appeal) did not call two potential
witnesses: Eltio Plater and a corrections officer named
Neb. 562] In June 2011, Abdulkadir was an inmate at the
Nebraska State Penitentiary. During the afternoon of June 30,
Abdulkadir reported to a caseworker, Cody Eastman, that some
items from his cell were missing. Eastman told Abdulkadir to
fill out a report to assist in the investigation. Instead,
Abdulkadir began asking fellow inmates if they knew anything
about the theft. Abdulkadir approached Grandon in the prison
gymnasium to discuss the stolen items, but Grandon apparently
denied any involvement.
to Abdulkadir's testimony and corroborating testimony by
another inmate, Danny Robinson, later that afternoon, Grandon
punched Abdulkadir without warning and a struggle ensued.
Abdulkadir and Robinson testified that Grandon then took an
object, later discovered to be a knife, into his hand and
that Abdulkadir wrestled the knife from Grandon. Witnesses
saw Abdulkadir stab Grandon multiple times. After the
altercation, Grandon died from his injuries.
McFarland was an officer on duty in Abdulkadir's housing
unit on the day Grandon died. McFarland testified at trial
that while working in the control center, four inmates,
including Plater and Robinson, stood shoulder-to-shoulder,
blocking his view of the unit. McFarland told the inmates to
move and then heard the struggle between Grandon and
Abdulkadir from the direction the inmates had been
obstructing. He witnessed Grandon falling to the floor.
Abdulkadir then stood over Grandon, making stabbing motions
while Grandon rolled around in a fetal position.
of the four inmates who had allegedly blocked McFarland's
view testified at trial that they were merely cutting each
other's hair. They claimed not to be intentionally
obstructing the control center window. Plater was not called
called for help, and Eastman was the first to respond. When
Eastman entered the area, he witnessed Grandon already on the
floor in a fetal position and Abdulkadir standing over
Grandon, stabbing him twice. Eastman then [293 Neb. 563]
entered the area and told Abdulkadir to drop the knife;
testified that he saw Abdulkadir stab Grandon between 10 to
15 times while Grandon was on the floor. McFarland also said
that he heard Abdulkadir yelling, " 'You think you
can steal from me?'"  Another officer who was
also in the unit at the time testified at trial that
Abdulkadir stabbed Grandon only three or four times after
Grandon fell. Abdulkadir testified that during the struggle,
he became hysterical and apparently could not remember what
happened after he began stabbing Grandon. None of
Abdulkadir's trial witnesses claimed to have seen the
suffered a total of 25 stab wounds. He was still alive
briefly after Abdulkadir was escorted away. But Grandon's
heart stopped beating before he arrived at the hospital.
the stabbing, Abdulkadir was taken to a segregation unit.
There, an officer overheard Abdulkadir responding to
inmates' questions about why he was in segregation.
According to that officer's testimony, Abdulkadir told
them that " 'somebody was stealing his shit and he
couldn't let that happen and that he'd do it
convicted Abdulkadir, and the district court sentenced him to
a term of life-to-life imprisonment for second degree murder
and 15 to 25 years' imprisonment for use of a deadly
weapon. We affirmed the convictions on direct appeal.
Abdulkadir then filed the motion for postconviction relief at