United States District Court, M.D. Alabama, Northern Division
ROBERT NATHAN JONES, Reg. No. 26039-001 Petitioner,
WALTER WOODS, Respondent.
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 Robert Nathan Jones, a
federal inmate confined in the Maxwell Federal Prison Camp at
the time he filed this civil action. In this petition, Jones
contends he is entitled “[t]o serve the remaining part
of [his] imposed sentence in home confinement, less any good
time earned.” Doc. 1 at 7. Specifically, Jones 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 on December 21,
2018. Jones also asserts that the BOP is denying him his
right to placement on home confinement based on his age as
mandated by the Act. He requests that the court issue an
order directing the BOP to immediately calculate his GCT and
place him on home confinement as required by the First Step
Act of 2018. Doc. 2 at 4.
response to the habeas petition, the respondent argues that
the petition is due to be denied because Jones failed to
exhaust his available administrative remedies provided by the
BOP prior to seeking relief from this court. Doc. 14 at 4-6.
He also denies any violation of Jones' constitutional
rights or federal law with respect to either the calculation
of his GCT or his lack of placement on home confinement. Doc.
16 at 6-8.
support of his exhaustion defense, the respondent maintains
The Administrative Remedy Program [established by the BOP] is
described at 28 C.F.R. § 542.10, et seq., Administrative
Remedy Procedures for Inmates. In accordance with the
[formal] administrative remedy procedures, inmates must first
present their complaint to the Warden of the facility in
which the inmate is confined[.] . . . Administrative Remedy
Form BP-229(13) is the form to be utilized at the institution
level, which is commonly referred to as a “BP-9”
form. If the inmate is not satisfied with the response to the
BP-9 received from the Warden, the response may be appealed
to the Regional Director within 20 days of when the warden
signed the response. Administrative Remedy Form BP-230(13) is
the form to be utilized at the regional level, which is
commonly referred to as a “BP-10” form. If the
inmate is not satisfied with the response of the Regional
Director, that response may be appealed to the General
Counsel's Office within 30 days of when the Regional
Director signed the response. Appeal to BOP's Office of
General Counsel is the final step in the BOP's
administrative remedy process. Administrative Remedy Form
BP-231(13) is the form to be utilized at the final level,
which is commonly referred to as a “BP-11” form.
The response from the General Counsel's Office is
considered the final agency decision.
If the inmate does not receive a response within the time
allotted for reply, including extension, the inmate may
consider the absence of a response to be a denial at that
level. 28 C.F.R. § 542.18.
. . . .
The Sentry Administrative Remedy Log for inmate Jones
reflects that he has submitted twelve remedy requests; some
have been accepted and some rejected. However, not one of
these twelve remedy requests has been regarding [the claims
presented in this case].
Petitioner states in his filing there “are not
administrative remedies available to the Petitioner.”
But fails to say how or why he cannot use the [administrative
Thus, Petitioner has not exhausted the available
administrative remedies and his petition should be dismissed.
14-3 at 2-4 (paragraph numbering omitted) (footnote added).
respondent further argues that even had Jones exhausted his
administrative remedies he is entitled to no relief on the
claims pending before this court. Initially, with respect to
Jones' claim seeking an immediate award of GCT credit
under the First Step Act of 2018, the respondent argues that
“[t]his particular change does not become effective
until the Attorney General completes, within 210 days of the
FSA's passage, [sometime in July of 2019, ] a
‘risks and needs assessment system.' See
FSA, Sections 101(a) & 102(b)(2).” Doc. 14 at 3. As
such, he maintains this claim is premature. The respondent
next argues that Jones is not entitled to home confinement
because the BOP retains complete discretion “as to
whether and when a prisoner is assigned home
confinement” and claims alleging a right to home
confinement “are expressly insulated from judicial
review.” Doc. 14 at 6-7.
reply to the respondent's response, Jones states that his
GCT claim “is not the critical juncture in this
case” but, instead, the critical issue is his request
for placement on home confinement so “Petitioner does
not require this Court to address good time
calculations.” Doc. 16 at 4. With respect to his home
confinement claim, Jones contends that he meets each of the
eligibility requirements for placement on home confinement
set forth in First Step Act of 2018 and is therefore entitled
to such placement. Doc. 16 at 1-6. In sum, Jones maintains
“the FSA mandates that [he] be released to home
confinement.” Doc. 16 at 9. As discussed below,
infra. at 6-8, this assertion is foreclosed by
applicable federal law.
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, Jones
alleges the BOP has failed to calculate his good time credits