United States District Court, M.D. Alabama, Northern Division
JUSTIN WYKOFF, Reg. No. 09352-073, Petitioner,
WALTER WOODS, et al., Respondents.
RECOMMENDATION OF THE MAGISTRATE JUDGE
CHARLES S. COODY, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
case is before the court on a 28 U.S.C. § 2241 petition
for writ of habeas corpus filed by Justin Wykoff, a federal
inmate confined in the Maxwell Federal Prison Camp at the
time he filed this civil action. In this petition, Wykoff
challenges the constitutionality of a disciplinary lodged
against him on August 28, 2018 for improper use of mail other
than criminal arising from his alleged communication via
e-mail with an entity who was not listed as an approved
correspondent on his contact list which resulted in a loss of
good time credits. Doc. 1 at 2; Doc. 1-1. In a claim
completely unrelated to the disciplinary challenge, Wykoff
alleges that the Bureau of Prisons (“BOP”) has
failed to immediately recalculate his sentence and correct
his Good Conduct Time (“GCT”) credit in
accordance with the provisions of the First Step Act enacted
in December of 2018.
thorough review of the response filed by the respondents and
in accordance with applicable federal law, the court finds
that Wycoff's claim requesting immediate calculation of
his good time under the First Step Act of 2018 is due to be
dismissed without prejudice as this claim is premature.
is well-settled that a 28 U.S.C. § 2241 petition for
writ of habeas corpus is the proper vehicle for a prisoner to
challenge the manner, location or execution of his sentence.
See Lopez v. Davis, 531 U.S. 230, 236 (2001);
Williams v. Pearson, 197 Fed.Appx. 872, 877 (11th
Cir. 2006); Stephens v. Herrera, 464 F.3d 895, 897
(9th Cir. 2006); United States v. Williams, 425 F.3d
987, 990 (11th Cir. 2005); Bishop v. Reno, 210 F.3d
1295, 1304 n.14 (11th Cir. 2005); Jiminian v. Nash,
245 F.3d 144, 146 (2d Cir. 2001); United States v.
Miller, 871 F.2d 488, 490 (4th Cir. 1989). Here, Wykoff
challenges the constitutionality of a disciplinary which
resulted in a loss of good time credits and alleges the BOP
has failed to calculate good time credits pursuant to the
First Step Act of 2018. These claims are proper for review
under 28 U.S.C. § 2241. “Jurisdiction is
determined at the time the action is filed[.]”
United States v. Edwards, 27 F.3d 564 (4th Cir.
1994). Thus, venue is proper before this court as Wykoff was
incarcerated in this district at the time he filed the
instant petition. Fernandez v. United States, 941
F.2d, 1488, 1495 (11th Cir. 1991) (holding that, generally, a
28 U.S.C. § 2241petition for habeas corpus relief
“may be brought only in the district court . . . in
which the inmate is incarcerated.”); Brown v.
Warden of FCI Williamsburg, 2019 WL 1780747, at *2
(D.S.C. Mar. 25., 2019), Report and Recommendation adopted,
2019 WL 1773382 (D.S.C. Apr. 23, 2019) (“A petition
under § 2241must be brought against the warden of the
facility where the prisoner is being held [at the time he
files the petition], 28 U.S.C. § 2242; Rumsfeld v.
Padilla, 542 U.S. [426, ] 434-35 (2004), and ‘in
the district of confinement rather than in the sentencing
court,' Miller, 871 F.2d at 490.”).
Calculation of Good Time Credits
complains that the BOP has failed to immediately recalculate
his sentence and correct his award of GCT credit according to
the First Step Act of 2018. With respect to this claim, the
respondents argue that “[t]his particular change does
not become effective until the Attorney General completes,
within 210 days of the [First Step Act's] passage,
[sometime in July of 2019, ] a ‘risks and needs
assessment system.' See FSA, Sections 101(a)
& 102(b)(2).” Doc. 32 at 4.
Section 102(b)(1) of the First Step Act amended 18 U.S.C.
§ 3624(b) and therefore altered the availability of
good-time credit for federal inmates. Specifically, it
increased the maximum allowable good-time credit from 47 days
to 54 days per year, and directed the BOP to calculate
good-time credit from the beginning of the year rather than
the end. However, these provisions do not take effect until
the Attorney General completes the “risk and needs
assessment system, ” which must be completed within 210
days after December 21, 2018, as provided by sections 101(a)
and 102(b)(2) of the First Step Act. See Schmutzler v.
Quintana, No. 5:19-046-DCR, 2019 WL 727794, at *2 (E.D.
Ky. Feb. 20, 2019). Thus, section 102(b)(1) “will not
take effect until approximately mid-July 2019.”
Christopher v. Wilson, No. 4:19-cv-214-O, 2019 WL
1745968, at *1 (N.D. Tex. Apr. 18, 2019). Accordingly,
[Petitioner's] argument that he is entitled to immediate
relief lacks merit, and his request for a recalculation of
his good-time credit based upon the amendments is premature.
See Schmutzler, 2019 WL 727794, at *2 (summarily
dismissing § 2241 petition based on delayed effective
date of the First Step Act as premature and because
petitioner failed to exhaust administrative remedies);
see also Brown v. Warden of FCI Williamsburg, No.
8:19-cv-00546-HMH-JDA, 2019 WL 1780747, at *6-7 (D.S.C. Mar.
25, 2019); Rizzolo v. Puentes, No.
1:19-cv-00290-SKO-HC, 2019 WL 1229772, at *3 (E.D. Cal. Mar.
15, 2019) (same); Sheppard v. Quintana, No.
5:19-cv-084-DCR, 2019 WL 1103391, at *2 (E.D. Ky. Mar. 8,
2019) (same); Sennett v. Quintana, No.
5:19-cv-085-JMH, 2019 WL 1085173, at *2 (E.D. Ky. Mar.7,
2019) (same)[;] [Pizarro v. White, No. 1:19-CV-343,
2019 WL 1922437, at *1 (M.D. Pa. Apr. 30, 2019) (same);
Kornfeld v. Puentes, No. 119CV00263JLTHC, 2019 WL
1004578, at *3 (E.D. Cal. Mar. 1, 2019) (same)].
Crittendon v. White, No. 1:19-CV-669, 2019 WL
1896501, at *1 (M.D. Pa. Apr. 29, 2019). Wykoff's request
for immediate recalculation of his sentence based on the good
time provisions set forth in the First Step Act of 2018 is
therefore premature and subject to dismissal at this time.
it is the RECOMMENDATION of the undersigned Magistrate Judge
the extent the petitioner seeks an immediate award of good
time credit under the provisions of the First Step Act of
2018, this claim be ...