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Reid v. Antonelli

United States District Court, D. South Carolina, Greenville Division

May 22, 2018

Anthony Reid, #27589-171, Petitioner,
v.
B.M. Antonelli, Warden, Respondent.

          REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION

          Kevin F. McDonald, United States Magistrate Judge

         The petitioner, Anthony Reid (“the petitioner”), a federal prisoner proceeding pro se, files a petition for a writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241. Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(B) and Local Civil Rule 73.02(B)(2)(c) (D.S.C.), the undersigned United States Magistrate Judge is authorized to review all pretrial matters in pro se cases and to submit findings and recommendations to the District Court. Having reviewed the petition, including the attachments, and applicable law, it is recommended that the petition be summarily dismissed.

         STANDARD OF REVIEW

         Under established local procedure in this judicial district, a careful review has been made of the pro se habeas petition filed in this case. This Court is charged with screening the petitioner's habeas petition to determine if “it plainly appears from the petition and any attached exhibits that the petitioner is not entitled to relief in the district court.” Rule 4 of Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases in the United States District Courts; see also Rule 1(b) of Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases in the United States District Courts (a district court may apply these rules to a habeas corpus petition not filed pursuant to § 2254). This Court is also required to construe pro se petitions liberally. Pro se petitions are held to a less stringent standard than those drafted by attorneys, Gordon v. Leeke, 574 F.2d 1147, 1151 (4th Cir.1978), and a federal district court is charged with liberally construing a petition filed by a pro se litigant to allow the development of a potentially meritorious case. Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89 (2007). The requirement of liberal construction, however, does not mean that the Court can ignore a clear failure in the pleading to allege facts which set forth a claim cognizable in a federal district court. Weller v. Dep't of Soc. Servs., 901 F.2d 387 (4th Cir.1990).

         BACKGROUND

         The petitioner is an inmate at FCI-Williamsburg, a facility of the Federal Bureau of Prisons (“BOP”), in Salters, South Carolina. On March 11, 2018, the petitioner filed a habeas petition in which he asserts that the BOP imposed a sanction against him in a disciplinary proceeding that he contends was “unfair” and “unwarranted” (doc.1 at 7). The incident report, relative to this sanction, describes the incident as “REFUSING A WORK, OR TO ACCEPT A PROGRAM ASSIGNMENT” (doc. 1-1 at 10). In the description of the incident, it appears that the petitioner was supposed to attend “GED classes from 9:30-11:00 AM on Monday through Friday” and that on Monday, October 2, 2017, the petitioner was absent (Id.). The incident report sets forth that the petitioner was “issued warning on various occasions and counseled regarding the importance of attending class and the consequences of not attending” (Id.). As a consequence of not being in class, the petitioner lost 30 days of commissary time. The petitioner challenged this disciplinary action through the BOP administrative grievance process, but he was unsuccessful in getting the infraction overturned.

         The petitioner filed the instant petition for relief on April 11, 2018, challenging the disciplinary infraction (doc1 at 1). The petitioner does not challenge his absence from class; instead, he appears to present a mitigation argument. The petitioner contends that on the day that he was absent from his GED class, he was trying to meet an “eminent deadline” to file a reply to an adverse response from the U.S. Government in a 28 U.S.C. § 2255 habeas proceeding (Id. at 7). He also appears to blame FCI Williamsburg for failing to explain to him and other inmates what they must to do to respond to requests in habeas cases (Id.). As relief, the petitioner seeks to have the disciplinary infraction removed from his file and reclassified as a “Notice/Warning” (doc. 1 at 8).

         DISCUSSION

         Habeas corpus is the appropriate remedy for a prisoner “who challenges the fact or duration of his confinement and seeks immediate or speedier release.” Heck v. Humphrey, 512 U.S. 477, 481 (1994) (citing Preiser v. Rodriguez, 411 U.S. 475 (1973)). While a § 2241 petition is appropriate where a prisoner challenges the fact or length of his confinement, it is not available to challenge the conditions of that confinement. See Preiser v. Rodriguez, 411 U.S. at 499-500. Thus, proper remedy lies in habeas corpus only if “success in [an] action would necessarily demonstrate the invalidity of confinement or its duration.” Wilkinson v. Dotson, 544 U.S. 74, 82 (2005). The factual allegations of the petition do not raise an issue that affects the duration of the petitioner's confinement, because the petitioner did not lose good time credit in the disciplinary process. See Wolff v. McDonnell, 418 U.S. 539, 564 (1974) (loss of statutory good time credit in a prison disciplinary proceeding involves a constitutionally protected liberty interest). The loss of commissary privileges that the petitioner suffered as a result of the disciplinary charge does not give rise to a federal habeas corpus claim because it fails to affect the length of the petitioner's confinement. Thus, the instant petition fails to state a habeas claim and should be dismissed.

         RECOMMENDATION

         It is recommended that the petition for writ of habeas corpus be dismissed without prejudice and without requiring a response by the respondent. The petitioner's attention is directed to the important notice on the next page.

         Notice of Right to File Objections to Report and Recommendation

         The parties are advised that they may file specific written objections to this Report and Recommendation with the District Judge. Objections must specifically identify the portions of the Report and Recommendation to which objections are made and the basis for such objections. “[I]n the absence of a timely filed objection, a district court need not conduct a de novo review, but instead must ‘only satisfy itself that there is no clear error on the face of the record in order to accept the recommendation.'” Diamond v. Colonial Life & Acc. Ins. Co., 416 F.3d 310 (4th Cir. 2005) (quoting Fed.R.Civ.P. 72 advisory committee's note).

         Specific written objections must be filed within fourteen (14) days of the date of service of this Report and Recommendation. 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1); Fed.R.Civ.P. 72(b); see Fed. R. Civ. P. 6(a), (d). Filing by mail pursuant to Federal ...


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