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Stanley v. Quintana

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE WESTERN DISTRICT OF PENNSYLVANIA


June 17, 2010

DAMEION STANLEY, PETITIONER,
v.
FRANCISCO QUINTANA, RESPONDENT.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Magistrate Judge Susan Paradise Baxter

OPINION AND ORDER*fn1

I. Background

On December 14, 2005, the United States District Court for the Western District of New York sentenced Petitioner to 66 months' imprisonment with a five-year term of supervised release to follow for Possession with Intent to Distribute Marijuana and Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime, in violation of 21 U.S.C. § 841(a)(1) and 18 U.S.C. § 924(c)(1). On December 14, 2005, Petitioner commenced his sentence, and on February 10, 2006, the Bureau of Prisons (the "BOP") designated him to serve his term of imprisonment at the Federal Correctional Institution at McKean ("FCI-McKean"), located in Bradford, Pennsylvania.

Pending before this Court is Petitioner's habeas corpus petition, which he has filed pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241. He alleges that the BOP's regulations regarding placement into a Residential Re-Entry Center ("RRC")*fn2 are unlawful because they were promulgated in violation of the Administrative Procedures Act ("APA"). As relief, he requests that the BOP be ordered to release him to an RRC at the earliest possible date.

In his Response , Defendant argues that the petition should be dismissed because Petitioner failed to exhaust his administrative remedies. In the alternative, Defendant argues that the case should be dismissed as prematurely filed because the BOP had not at that point made a decision regarding Petitioner's RRC placement.

The Court need not reach Defendant's arguments because Petitioner's term of imprisonment expired on December 10, 2009, and he was released from BOP custody on that date. Therefore, for the reasons set forth below, this case will be dismissed as moot.

II. Discussion

It is a well-established principle that federal courts do not have jurisdiction to decide an issue unless it presents a live case or controversy as required by Article III of the Constitution. See Spencer v. Kemna, 523 U.S. 1, 7 (1998); Burkey v. Marberry, 556 F.3d 142, 147 (3d Cir.), cert. denied 130 S.Ct. 458 (2009). "This case-or-controversy requirement subsists through all stages of federal judicial proceedings, trial and appellate ... the parties must continue to have a 'personal stake in the outcome' of the lawsuit." Id. at 7 (quoting Lewis v. Continental Bank Corp., 494 U.S. 472, 477-78 (1990)). If developments occur during the course of adjudication that eliminate a petitioner's personal stake in the outcome of a suit or prevent a court from being able to grant effective relief, the case must be dismissed as moot. Burkey, 556 F.3d at 147 (citing Spencer, 523 U.S. at 7).

Because Petitioner has been released from BOP custody, there is no additional relief that this Court can provide to him. He no longer has the requisite "personal stake" in the outcome of the litigation. See Id.; Spencer, 523 U.S. at 7. Accordingly, there is no case or controversy for this Court to consider, and the petition for writ of habeas corpus must be dismissed as moot.*fn3

III. Conclusion

For the foregoing reasons, the Petition For Writ Of Habeas Corpus [Document # 4] is dismissed as moot.

An appropriate Order follows.

ORDER

AND NOW, this 17th day of June, 2010;

IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that the Petition For Writ Of Habeas Corpus [Document # 4] is DISMISSED AS MOOT. The Clerk of Courts is directed to close this case.

SUSAN PARADISE BAXTER United States Magistrate Judge


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