United States District Court, M.D. Pennsylvania
DAVID A. LUSTER, Petitioner,
L. J. ODDO, WARDEN, Respondent.
Matthew W. Brann United States District Judge
A. Luster, an inmate presently confined at the Allenwood
United States Penitentiary, White Deer, Pennsylvania
(USP-Allenwood) filed this pro se habeas corpus
petition pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241. Named as
Respondent is USP-Allenwood Warden L. J. Oddo. The required
filing fee has been paid.
was indicted by a grand jury in the United States District
Court for the Middle District of Georgia on a charge of
aggravated bank robbery. Luster was subsequently convicted of
that offense and is presently serving an enhanced sentence
under the Armed Career Criminal Act (ACCA) imposed on April
1, 2004. See Doc. 1, ¶ 4.
pending action, Petitioner claims that the Federal Bureau of
Prisons (BOP) was precluded from implementing the Inmate
Financial Responsibility Program (IFRP) in his case because
“he is actually innocent of a crime of violence.”
Id., ¶ 5. The petition notes that because the
landscape of the law has substantively changed since his
conviction as a result of the principles announced in cases
such as Apprendi v. New Jersey, 530 U.S. 466
(2000) and Johnson v. United States, 135
S.Ct. 2551 (2015), his original conviction is
unconstitutional and the taking of his funds via the IFRP
constitutes extortion by the BOP.
explains that his underlying “charging document”
did not provided adequate notice of his criminal charges
because it failed to expressly mention use, attempted use,
threatened use of physical force in seeking an enhanced
sentence under the ACCA. Doc. 2, p. 2.
relief, Petitioner asks that his judgment of sentence be set
aside and remanded for resentencing and that he be provided
with reimbursement of funds taken from his inmate account
under the IFRP.
initially noted that this is the second § 2241 action
filed by Luster with this Court in 2017. Petitioner's
earlier action, Luster v. Oddo, 17-CV- 684,
similarly challenged the legality of his underlying criminal
indictment on the basis that it did not explicitly express
the essential facts of the criminal charges. Luster's
earlier case was transferred to the sentencing court for
consideration of his Johnson based argument on May
25, 2017. This one will be as well.
Standard of Review
corpus petitions are subject to summary dismissal pursuant to
Rule 4 (“Preliminary Review”) of the Rules
Governing Section 2254 Cases in the United States District
Courts, 28 U.S.C. foll. § 2254 (2004). See, e.g.,
Mutope v. Pennsylvania Board of Probation and Parole,
2007 WL 846559 *2 (M.D. Pa. March 19, 2007)(Kosik, J.). The
provisions of Rule 4 are applicable to § 2241 petitions
under Rule 1(b)). See, e.g., Patton v. Fenton, 491
F.Supp. 156, 158-59 (M.D. Pa. 1979).
provides in pertinent part: “If it plainly appears from
the petition and any attached exhibits that the petitioner is
not entitled to relief in the district court, the judge must
dismiss the petition and direct the clerk to notify the
petitioner.” A petition may be dismissed without review
of an answer “when the petition is frivolous, or
obviously lacking in merit, or where. . . the necessary facts
can be determined from the petition itself. . . .”
Gorko v. Holt, 2005 WL 1138479 *1(M.D. Pa. May 13,
2005)(McClure, J.)(quoting Allen v. Perini, 424 F.2d
134, 141 (6th Cir. 1970).
federal prisoner may challenge the execution of his sentence
by initiating an action pursuant to § 2241. See
Woodall v. Federal Bureau of Prisons, 432 F.3d 235, 241
(3d Cir. 2005). Prisoners may bring habeas corpus petitions
to attack either the fact or duration of their confinement in
prison. Preiser v. Rodriguez, 411 U.S. 475 (1973),
Telford v. Hepting, 980 F.2d 745, 748 (3d Cir.),
cert. denied, 510 U.S. 920 (1993). However, federal
habeas corpus relief is only available “where the
deprivation of rights is such that it necessarily impacts the
fact or length of detention.” Leamer v.
Fauver, 288 F.3d 532, 540 (3d Cir. 2002).