United States District Court, D. South Carolina
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
J. GOSSETT UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
petitioner, Josand Farmer, a self-represented prisoner
confined at Federal Correctional Institution Williamsburg,
filed a petition for a writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28
U.S.C. § 2241. This matter is before the court pursuant
to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b) and Local Civil Rule
73.02(B)(2)(c) (D.S.C.). Having reviewed the Amended Petition
in accordance with applicable law, the court concludes that
it should be summarily dismissed.
Factual and Procedural Background
a federal inmate being held at FCI Williamsburg, indicates he
was convicted of conspiracy to distribute cocaine base and
two counts of aiding and abetting to distribute cocaine base
on March 24, 2011 in the Eastern District of North Carolina.
(Am. Pet., ECF No. 6 at 1, ECF No. 6-1 at 2.) He indicates he
was sentenced on September 26, 2011. (Id., ECF No. 6
at 1.) In 2012, Petitioner filed a motion to alter or amend
his sentence pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2255 in the Eastern
District of North Carolina, which was denied in 2013.
(Id. at 4.)
now seeks a petition for a writ of habeas corpus pursuant to
28 U.S.C. § 2241, asking the court to vacate his
conspiracy conviction and remand for resentencing. Petitioner
raises two grounds for relief in the Amended Petition. First,
he argues his sentence was erroneously increased because the
sentencing court failed to conduct “a reasonable
foreseeable determination” to “accurately
set” his mandatory minimum. (Id. at 6.)
Specifically, Petitioner argues that the Government's
informants who testified at his trial did not present
sufficient evidence that the drugs were attributable to
Petitioner, and thus, the sentencing court incorrectly
increased his sentence under 21 U.S.C. § 841.
(Id. at 5-6.) Second, he argues his mandatory
minimum was erroneously increased because the sentencing
court used a non-existent predicate offense under 21 U.S.C.
§ 851. (Id. at 7.)
Standard of Review
established local procedure in this judicial district, a
careful review has been made of the pro se Amended
Petition filed pursuant to the Rules Governing § 2254
Cases,  28 U.S.C. § 2254; the Antiterrorism
and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996
(“AEDPA”), Pub. L. No. 104-132, 110 Stat. 1214;
and in light of the following precedents: Denton v.
Hernandez, 504 U.S. 25 (1992); Neitzke v.
Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 324-25 (1989); Haines v.
Kerner, 404 U.S. 519 (1972); Nasim v. Warden, Md.
House of Corr., 64 F.3d 951 (4th Cir. 1995) (en
banc); Todd v. Baskerville, 712 F.2d 70 (4th
court is required to liberally construe pro se
pleadings, which are held to a less stringent standard than
those drafted by attorneys. Erickson v. Pardus, 551
U.S. 89, 94 (2007); King v. Rubenstein, 825 F.3d
206, 214 (4th Cir. 2016). Nonetheless, the requirement of
liberal construction 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. See
Weller v. Dep't of Soc. Servs., 901 F.2d 387 (4th
Cir. 1990); see also Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S.
662, 684 (2009) (outlining pleading requirements under Rule 8
of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure for “all civil
petitioner cannot challenge his federal conviction and
sentence under § 2241 unless he can show under the
“savings clause” of § 2255(e) that a §
2255 motion is “inadequate or ineffective to test the
legality of his detention.” See 28 U.S.C.
§ 2255(e); see also Rice v. Rivera, 617 F.3d
802, 807 (4th Cir. 2010) (providing that if a federal
prisoner brings a § 2241 petition that does not fall
within the scope of the savings clause, the district court
must dismiss the unauthorized habeas petition for lack of
jurisdiction). The United States Court of Appeals for the
Fourth Circuit has held that a petitioner must establish the
following criteria to demonstrate that a § 2255 motion
is inadequate or ineffective to test the legality of a
(1) [A]t the time of sentencing, settled law of this circuit
or the Supreme Court established the legality of the
sentence; (2) subsequent to the prisoner's direct appeal
and first § 2255 motion, the aforementioned settled
substantive law changed and was deemed to apply retroactively
on collateral review; (3) the prisoner is unable to meet the
gatekeeping provisions of § 2255(h)(2) for second or
successive motions; and (4) due to this retroactive change,
the sentence now presents an error sufficiently grave to be
deemed a fundamental defect.
United States v. Wheeler, 886 F.3d 415, 429 (4th
the two grounds for relief raised in the Amended Complaint do
not rely on a change in the substantive law that has been
made applicable to Petitioner's sentence on collateral
review. Rather, Petitioner relies on law existing at the time
of his conviction and sentence to challenge the lawfulness of
his sentence. Therefore, under Fourth Circuit ...