United States District Court, D. Hawaii
ORDER DENYING DEFENDANT'S MOTION FOR EARLY
RELEASE AND PLACEMENT IN A HALFWAY HOUSE (ECF NO.
GILLMOR UNITED STATES JUDGE
September 23, 2019, Defendant, proceeding pro se,
filed a motion seeking early release under the First Step
Act. (ECF No. 34). Defendant seeks two forms of relief: a
determination that he is eligible for early release under the
First Step Act and a recommendation from this Court that he
be placed in a Residential Reentry Center for the final
12-months of his sentence.
pled guilty to three counts of bank robbery pursuant to 18
U.S.C. § 2113(a). (ECF No. 22). On February 7, 2019, he
was sentenced to 41-months of imprisonment. (ECF No. 32). He
is currently incarcerated at FCI Lompoc, in the Central
District of California.
Eligibility For Early Release Under The First Step
the First Step Act of 2018, Pub. L. No. 115-391, 132 Stat.
5194, prisoners are allowed to earn good time credits which
may result in up to 12-months of early release. 18 U.S.C.
§ 3624(c). Prisoners convicted of certain specified
offenses listed in 18 U.S.C. § 3632(d)(4)(D) are not
eligible to receive good time credits and early release.
alleges that he was informed by a prison official that his
convictions preclude him from eligibility for early release.
He seeks an order from this Court requiring the Bureau of
Prisons “to grant me the eligibility for early
release.” (Def.'s Motion at p. 1, ECF No. 34).
was convicted of three violations of 18 U.S.C. §
2113(a). Prisoners convicted of bank robbery under 18 U.S.C.
§ 2113(a) are not excluded from eligibility for early
release. See 18 U.S.C. § 3632(d)(4)(D).
prisoner who is not excluded from eligibility under 18 U.S.C.
§ 3632(d)(4)(D) is required to earn early release time
credits to be deemed suitable for placement in a Residential
Reentry Center. 18 U.S.C. §§ 3624(b), (c), (g); 18
U.S.C. § 3632. The Bureau of Prisons is tasked with
calculating and applying a prisoner's early release time
credits. 18 U.S.C. § 3624(b); United States v.
Wilson, 503 U.S. 329, 335 (1992).
prisoner is dissatisfied by the Bureau of Prison's
sentencing credit calculation, he may challenge the
calculation in federal court through a 28 U.S.C. § 2241
habeas petition. See Zavala v. Ives, 785 F.3d 367,
370 n.3 (9th Cir. 2015); United States v. Giddings,
740 F.2d 770, 772 (9th Cir. 1984). Before filing a habeas
petition an inmate must exhaust the administrative remedies
provided by the Bureau of Prisons. See Chua Han Mow v.
United States, 730 F.2d 1308, 1313 (9th Cir. 1984),
cert. denied, 470 U.S. 1031 (1985); see Blankenship v.
Meeks, Civ. No. 11-00443 DAE-KSC, 2011 WL 4527408, *2
(D. Haw. Sept. 28, 2011). After exhausting his administrative
remedies a federal prisoner may file a § 2241 petition
in the district in which he is incarcerated. See
Hernandez v. Campbell, 204 F.3d 861, 865 (9th Cir.
2000); United States v. Pratt, 2019 WL 3229617, at
*2 (E.D. Cal. July 18, 2019), report and recommendation
adopted, 2019 WL 3769079 (E.D. Cal. Aug. 9, 2019).
Court lacks jurisdiction to review a Bureau of Prison
decision related to Defendant's eligibility for early
release under the First Step Act.
Judicial Recommendation For Placement In A Residential
Bureau of Prisons has the discretion to place an inmate in a
Residential Reentry Center. 18 U.S.C. §§ 3621(b),
3624(c)(1); Sacora v. Thomas, 628 F.3d 1059, 1061-62
(9th Cir. 2010). The Bureau of Prisons is granted the power
to designate prisoner housing because it is in the best
position to evaluate whether prisoners meet the requirements
for placement in a halfway house or other type of
correctional facility. United States v. Bishop, Cr.
No. 07-00516 JMS-06, 2015 WL 13235851, at *3 (D. Haw. Oct. 2,
2015); United States v. Phelps, 2019 WL 2291454, at
*2 (D. Nev. May 29, 2019).
has provided the Court with documentation of his commendable
efforts to educate and rehabilitate himself while
incarcerated. (Def.'s Motion at p. 3, ECF No. 34). The
Bureau of Prisons, which is in possession of Defendant's
full history of incarceration, is in the appropriate position
to evaluate Defendant's placement. Bishop, 2015
WL 13235851, at *3.
not within this Court's jurisdiction to issue a binding
order to grant ...