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Cane v. Rathman

United States District Court, N.D. Alabama, Eastern Division

March 22, 2019

DARYL J. CANE, Petitioner,
v.
JOHN T. RATHMAN, Respondent.

          MEMORANDUM OPINION

          KARON OWEN BOWDRE CHIEF UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

         This is an action on a petition for a writ of habeas corpus filed pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241 by Daryl J. Cane, a federal prisoner proceeding pro se. (Doc. 1). Cane challenges the execution of his sentence imposed pursuant to his conviction for being a felon in possession of a firearm in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1). (Id. at 2). When Cane filed the petition, he was incarcerated at the Federal Correctional Institute in Talladega, Alabama. (Id. at 3).[1] Cane alleges he has exhausted his administrative remedies, and the respondent concedes this allegation. (Id. at 2; Doc. 5 at 3-4).[2] For the reasons discussed below, Cane's petition is due to be denied.

         I. Background

         On June 9, 2010, Cane was sentenced in Tennessee state court to a six-year term of confinement for a probation violation related to drug and firearm charges. (Doc. 1 at 1; Doc. 5 at 2). On or about January 26, 2011, Cane was transferred to federal authorities on a writ of habeas corpus ad prosequendum to face a federal charge for being a felon in possession of a firearm. (Doc. 1 at 1; Doc. 5 at 2). On September 23, 2011, after pleading guilty to the federal charge, Cane was sentenced in a Tennessee federal district court to a 105-month term of imprisonment, to run concurrently with his state sentence. (Doc. 1 at 1; Doc. 5 at 2). Although he was returned to state authorities to complete his state sentence, Cane received credit against his federal sentence beginning September 23, 2011. (Doc. 1 at 1; Doc. 5 at 2-3). On January 6, 2012, Cane was released on parole by state authorities and transferred to federal custody to complete his federal sentence. (Id. at 3).

         In this action, Cane seeks credit against his federal sentence pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 3585(b) for the eight months between January and September 2011, during which state authorities loaned him to federal authorities in connection with the federal firearm charge. (Doc. 1 at 2). Cane claims he did not receive credit against his state sentence for this time in federal custody. (Id.).

         In response to an order to show cause why the relief requested by Cane should not be granted, the respondent claimed Cane did receive credit against his state sentence for this time. (Doc. 5 at 10-11).[3] In support of this claim, the respondent submitted an e-mail from an employee of the Tennessee Department of Correction to an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons (“BOP”) dated October 4, 2011, stating Cane received credit against his state sentence for the period “5-24-10 to present.” (Doc. 5-2 at 24).

         After the magistrate judge notified Cane his petition was deemed ripe for summary disposition based on the respondent's response to the order to show cause, Cane submitted letters from the Tennessee Department of Correction dated February 19 and May 1, 2014, notifying him credits for the time in 2011 during which he was loaned to federal authorities could not be applied to his state sentence until the department received a progress report from federal authorities. (Doc. 7 at 7-8).[4]

         Because the 2011 e-mail indicated Cane did receive credit against his state sentence for the eight months at issue, but the 2014 letters suggested he may not have received this credit, the magistrate judge ordered the respondent to address this question of fact through the submission of a brief and/or evidentiary material. (Doc. 8).[5]

         Through a response accompanied by supporting evidentiary material, the respondent has clarified Cane received credit against his state sentence for the eight months at issue while in pretrial federal custody and the credit referenced in the 2014 letters was for behavior and performance credits that could reduce his state sentence. (Doc. 9 at 2-3; Doc. 9-1 at 3-4; Doc. 9-5).

         II. Discussion

         The BOP is responsible for computing a federal sentence pronounced by a district court. See United States v. Wilson, 503 U.S. 329, 335 (1992) (“After a district court sentences a federal offender, the Attorney General, through the BOP, has the responsibility for administering the sentence.”). A federal prisoner may challenge the BOP's computation of his sentence through a § 2241 petition. See Antonelli v. Warden, 542 F.3d 1348, 1352 (11th Cir. 2008) (holding § 2241 petition is proper vehicle for challenging execution, rather than validity, of sentence).

         Section 3585(b) provides as follows:

A defendant shall be given credit toward the service of a term of imprisonment for any time he has spent in official detention prior to the ...

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