United States District Court, M.D. Alabama, Northern Division
QUINCY B. JONES, Reg. No. 13407-002 Petitioner,
WARDEN GENE BEASLEY, Respondent.
RECOMMENDATION OF THE MAGISTRATE JUDGE
WALLACE CAPEL, JR. CHIEF UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
civil action is pending before the court on a 28 U.S.C.
§ 2241 application for habeas corpus relief filed by
Quincy B. Jones, a federal inmate currently incarcerated at
the Allenwood United States Penitentiary in White Deer,
Pennsylvania. In this habeas petition, Jones alleges
that under recent Supreme Court case law his murder for hire
conviction no longer qualifies as a crime of violence and
this court miscalculated the applicable sentencing
guidelines. Doc. 1 at 5-6; Doc. 1-1- at 2-5. Jones maintains
that he may proceed on his claims in a 28 U.S.C § 2241
petition under the “saving clause” of 28 U.S.C
§ 2255(e). Doc. 1-1 at 4-6. Although Jones states that
the Allenwood United States Penitentiary in White Deer,
Pennsylvania is located in the jurisdiction of this court,
Doc. 1-1 at 1, this facility is actually located within the
jurisdiction of the United States District Court for the
Middle District of Pennsylvania. 28 U.S.C. § 118.
review of the habeas petition, the court finds that this case
should be transferred to the United States District Court for
the Middle District of Pennsylvania pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
present civil action, Jones presents challenges to his
federal conviction and sentence in a 28 U.S.C. § 2241
habeas petition. Jones alleges he is permitted to seek relief
under 28. U.S.C. § 2241 via the “saving
clause” set forth in 28 U.S.C § 2255(e). However,
to proceed in such a habeas action, Jones must satisfy the
jurisdictional requirements of 28 U.S.C. § 2241. As a
general rule, a 28 U.S.C. § 2241 petition for habeas
corpus relief “may be brought only in the district
court for the district in which the inmate is
incarcerated.” Fernandez v. United States, 941
F.2d, 1488, 1495 (11th Cir. 1991); Braden v. 30th
Judicial Cir. Ct. of Ky., 410 U.S. 484, 494-495
(1973) (“The writ of habeas corpus does not act upon
the prisoner who seeks relief, but upon the person who holds
him in what is alleged to be unlawful custody.”).
“Jurisdiction is determined at the time the action is
filed[.]” United States v. Edwards, 27 F.3d
564 (4th Cir. 1994).
The federal habeas statute straightforwardly provides that
the proper respondent to a habeas petition is “the
person who has custody over [the petitioner].” 28
U.S.C. § 2242; see also § 2243 (“The
writ, or order to show cause shall be directed to the person
having custody of the person detained”). The consistent
use of the definite article in reference to the custodian
indicates that there is generally only one proper respondent
to a given prisoner's habeas petition. This custodian,
moreover, is “the person” with the ability to
produce the prisoner's body before the habeas court.
Ibid. We summed up the plain language of the habeas
statute over 100 years ago in this way: “[T]hese
provisions contemplate a proceeding against some person who
has the immediate custody of the
party detained, with the power to produce the body of such
party before the court or judge, that he may be liberated if
no sufficient reason is shown to the contrary.”
Wales v. Whitney, 114 U.S. 564, 574, 5 S.Ct. 1050,
29 L.Ed. 277 (1885) (emphasis added); see also Braden v.
30th Judicial Circuit Court of Ky., 410 U.S. 484,
494-95, 93 S.Ct. 1123, 35 L.Ed.2d 443 (1973) (“The writ
of habeas corpus” acts upon “the person who holds
[the detainee] in what is alleged to be unlawful custody,
” citing Wales, supra, at 574, 5
S.Ct. 1050); Braden, supra, at 495, 93
S.Ct. 1123 (“‘[T]his writ . . . is directed to .
. . [the] jailer, '” quoting In re
Jackson, 15 Mich. 417, 439-40 (1867)).
In accord with the statutory language and Wales'
immediate custodian rule, longstanding practice confirms that
in habeas challenges [, if they may be raised via §
2255(e)'s “saving clause” in a § 2241
habeas petition, ] to present physical confinement -
“core challenges” -the default rule is that the
proper respondent is the warden of the facility where the
prisoner is being held. . . .
Rumsfeld v. Padilla, 542 U.S. 426, 434-35
is presently incarcerated in the Allenwood United States
Penitentiary in White Deer, Pennsylvania, a facility not
located within the jurisdiction of this court. Instead, this
federal penitentiary is located within the jurisdiction of
the United States District Court for the Middle District of
Pennsylvania. “District courts are limited to granting
habeas relief within their respective jurisdictions. 28
U.S.C. § 2241 (a). “[The Supreme Court has]
interpreted this language to require nothing more than that
the court issuing the writ have jurisdiction over the
custodian[.]” Padilla, 542 U.S. at 442. This
court therefore lacks jurisdiction over the petitioner's
current § 2241 habeas petition. However, the law
provides that when a case is filed “laying venue in the
wrong division or district” a district court may,
“if it be in the interest of justice, transfer such
case to any district . . . where it could have been
brought.” 28 U.S.C. § 1406(a); see also
28 U.S.C. § 1404(a) (“For the convenience of
parties and witnesses, in the interest of justice, a district
court may transfer any civil action to any other district . .
. where it might have been brought[.]”); 28 U.S.C.
§ 1631 (specifically granting federal courts the power
to transfer a civil action to “cure a want of
jurisdiction” where such transfer “is in the
interest of justice[.]”). Under the circumstances of
this case, the undersigned concludes that in the interest of
justice this case should be transferred to the United States
District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania for
review and disposition.
it is the RECOMMENDATION of the Magistrate Judge that this
case be transferred to the United States District Court for
the Middle District of Pennsylvania pursuant to the
provisions of 28 U.S.C. § 1406(a).
before December 2, 2019, the parties may
file objections to this Recommendation. The parties must
specifically identify the factual findings and legal
conclusions contained in the Recommendation to which the
objection is made. Frivolous, conclusive, or general
objections will not be considered by the court.
to file written objections to the proposed factual findings
and legal conclusions set forth in the Recommendations of the
Magistrate Judge shall bar a party from a de novo
determination by the District Court of these factual findings
and legal conclusions and shall “waive the right to
challenge on appeal the District Court's order based on
unobjected-to factual and legal conclusions” except
upon grounds of plain error if necessary in the interests of
justice. 11TH Cir. R. 3-1; see Resolution Trust Co. v.
Hallmark Builders, Inc., 996 F.2d 1144, 1149 (11th Cir.
1993)(“When the magistrate provides such notice and a
party still fails to object to the findings of fact [and law]
and those ...