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Ward v. United States

United States District Court, W.D. Pennsylvania

May 11, 2015

WILMER WARD, Petitioner,
v.
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Respondent.

MEMORANDUM OPINION

MARK R. HORNAK, District Judge.

Wilmer Ward is a pro se prisoner litigant who is seeking credit against his federal sentence for time he spent in federal custody on a writ of habeas corpus ad prosequendum. He has filed a Motion to Request for a Nunc Pro Tunc Designation to that end. ECF No. 422. According to Ward, he spent approximately twenty-one (21) months in federal custody awaiting his federal sentence and has never received proper credit for that time. The Court will not reach the merits of Ward's Motion, however, because Ward failed to exhaust his administrative remedies as required by our Court of Appeals. The motion will therefore be dismissed without prejudice.

I. BACKGROUND

On June 22, 1999, Ward was charged with conspiracy to distribute and possession with intent to distribute fifty (50) grams of cocaine base in violation of 21 U.S.C. § 846. ECF No. 1. On June 1, 2000, Ward entered a plea of guilty to Count One of the indictment. ECF No. 184. On February 5, 2001, Ward was sentenced as follows:

Defendant shall pay a special assessment in the amount of $100.00 and the defendant is hereby committed to the custody of the U.S. Bureau of Prisons to be imprisoned for a term of 292 months and this term of imprisonment shall run concurrent with the undischarged State Court sentence the defendant is now serving and upon release from imprisonment the defendant shall be on supervised release for a term of 5 years with standard conditions of supervision, no fine imposed.

ECF No. 280. Between then and now, Ward has filed a number of motions seeking to reduce his sentence in one way or another with varying success. See ECF Nos. 281, 413, 415, and 423.

The Motion now before the Court is another such attempt: a Motion to Request for a Nunc Pro Tunc Designation. ECF No. 422.[1] Ward was in state custody when he was indicted on federal charges on June 22, 1999. As Ward explains in his Reply brief, he was placed in federal custody pursuant to a writ of habeas corpus ad prosequendum starting on July 6, 1999 and lasting for about 9 months. ECF No. 429, at 1; ECF No 36. He was then in federal custody pursuant to a second writ of habeas corpus ad prosequendum for a period of about 12 months. ECF No. 429, at 1; ECF No. 155. Thus, according to Ward, he was in federal custody prior to the imposition of his sentence for approximately twenty-one (21) months. ECF No. 429, at 1.

II. DISCUSSION

A. The Merits

The merits of the claim go like this. Under 18 U.S.C. § 3585(b), a defendant may, in some circumstances, receive credit for time served prior to the commencement of a sentence:

(b) Credit for prior custody.-A defendant shall be given credit toward the service of a term of imprisonment for any time he has spent in official detention prior to the date the sentence commences-
(1) as a result of the offense for which the sentence was imposed; or
(2) as a result of any other charge for which the defendant was arrested after the commission of the offense for ...

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