United States District Court, M.D. Alabama, Eastern Division
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
Keith Watkins United States District Judge
the court is Defendant John Carlos Tyner's motion to
dismiss the petition for revocation of supervised release.
(Doc. # 19.) Upon consideration of the parties' filings,
the facts introduced at the hearing on October 24, 2019, and
applicable law, this motion is due to be denied.
FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
case spans twenty-seven years and three different judges of
this district. Mr. Tyner plead guilty on November 10, 1992,
to bank robbery and to using and carrying a firearm during
and in relation to a crime of violence. (Doc. # 1, at 3; Doc.
# 1-1.) On February 9, 1993, Judge Robert Varner sentenced
Defendant to ninety-seven months in prison followed by four
years of supervised release. (Doc. # 1-3, at 1-3.) His term
of supervised release began on March 22, 2002. (Doc. # 4, at
August 4, 2004, Defendant was arrested for aggravated child
molestation in Georgia. On September 9, 2004, the United
States Probation Office (USPO) petitioned for revocation of
Defendant's supervised release and for an arrest warrant
on the grounds that his arrest violated the condition that he
“not commit another federal, state, or local
crime.” (Doc. # 1-4.) Judge W. Harold Albritton, III
ordered the issuance of a warrant, which was initially lodged
as a detainer with the Muscogee County Jail in Columbus,
Georgia. (Doc. # 1, at 4.) On October 20, 2005, Mr. Tyner
plead guilty to aggravated child molestation and was
sentenced to fifteen years in Georgia state prison. (Doc. #
14-2, Gov. Ex. 2.)
April 12, 2007, the United States Marshals Service
(“USMS”) lodged a detainer with the State of
Georgia. That detainer specified that an arrest warrant had
been issued charging Mr. Tyner with “violation of the
conditions of probation and/or supervised release, ”
and it requested that Mr. Tyner be given a copy of the
detainer. (Doc. # 1-6.) The Georgia Department of Corrections
(“GDC”) returned a document indicating that Mr.
Tyner was notified of the detainer on April 16, 2007. (Doc. #
22-2, Gov. Ex. 2.) Mr. Tyner testified that he was not
notified of the detainer then.
Mr. Tyner's release from GDC custody, he was arrested in
Georgia on August 7, 2019, and transferred to the Middle
District of Alabama. (Doc. # 7.) The USPO filed an amended
petition for revocation of supervised release on August 8,
2019, which noted Mr. Tyner's conviction. (Doc. # 4.) Mr.
Tyner filed this motion to dismiss on October 17 and
supplemented it on October 28, 2019. (Docs. # 19, 23.) The
Government filed written responses on October 21 and November
18, 2019. (Docs. # 21, 25.) A revocation hearing was held on
October 24, 2019 and was continued until December 9, 2019.
Tyner argues that his procedural due process rights have been
violated because the Government failed to provide him with
notice and a hearing on the allegations during the fifteen
years between the filing of the initial petition and his
release from GDC custody. He argues that the delay has
prejudiced his defense. The Government contends that Mr.
Tyner was not legally entitled to notice until he was in
federal custody and that he did, in fact, receive notice of
the detainer in 2007.
Mr. Tyner was not entitled to notice of his pending
revocation proceedings until he was in
motion presents issues of both law and fact. Whether Mr.
Tyner was, in fact, given notice that he may be subject to
revocation proceedings is in dispute. The Government contends
that Mr. Tyner was provided with notice because the GDC
produced a document indicating that Mr. Tyner was informed of
the detainer on April 16, 2007. (Doc. # 22-2; Gov. Ex. 2.)
The Government argues that this document should be conclusive
on this issue because “[o]fficial acts of public
officers are presumed regular in the absence of clear and
convincing evidence to the contrary.” (Doc. # 25, at 7
(collecting cases).) Mr. Tyner testified that he did not
receive notice in 2007 and that he was expecting to be
released on his GDC release date. He argues that this belief
was buttressed by a 2016 letter from USPO investigator Sharon
Shannon informing his institution that he has time remaining
on his supervised release and should report to the USPO upon
release from GDC. (Doc. # 22-3; Def. Ex. 1.) Mr. Tyner also
points to a letter sent from GDC's Director of Inmate
Administration to the USMS on April 19, 2007, which states
that the warden who has custody of Mr. Tyner “will be
instructed to inform the inmate of the source and content of
your detainer.” (Doc. # 22-3; Def. Ex. 3.) Because the
court concludes that Defendant is not entitled to dismissal,
it will assume arguendo that Mr. Tyner was not given
notice of the pending revocation proceedings until his 2019
on supervised release are entitled to due process before they
can be deprived of their liberty through release revocation.
Moody v. Daggett, 429 U.S. 78, 85 (1976) (holding
that the “conditional freedom of a parolee generated by
statute is a liberty interest protected by the Due Process
Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment”); United States
v. Copeland, 20 F.3d 412, 414 (11th Cir. 1994)
(“The same protections granted those facing revocation
of parole are required for those facing the revocation of
supervised release.”). These protections include the
right to notice of the allegations and a hearing.
Morrissey v. Brewer, 408 U.S. 471, 489 (1972). These
rights and the protections of Federal Rule of Criminal
Procedure 32.1 attach when the releasee is deprived of his
liberty by federal officials for release violations.
Moody, 429 U.S. at 87; United States v.
Cunningham, 150 Fed.Appx. 994, 996 (11th Cir. 2005) (per
curiam). Consequently, the Government was not required to
give Mr. Tyner notice and a hearing during his state
Mr. Tyner has not made a sufficient showing that he was
prejudiced by the delay between the filing
of the first revocation petition and his initial
Government delays notice and supervised release revocation
hearings at its peril. Even though Mr. Tyner was not entitled
to notice and a hearing as a matter of right within some
specified time period, unreasonable delay can constitute a
due process violation ...