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Compton v. Ebbert

United States District Court, M.D. Pennsylvania

July 15, 2019

TRAE JAVAR COMPTON, Petitioner,
v.
DAVID J. EBBERT, Respondent.

          MEMORANDUM

          HON. JOHN E. JONES III

         Presently before the court is a petition for writ of habeas corpus (Doc. 1) pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241 filed by Petitioner, Trae Javar Compton (“Compton”), a federal inmate presently incarcerated at the United States Penitentiary at Lewisburg (“USP-Lewisburg”), Pennsylvania. Compton asserts that his constitutional rights have been violated by the cumulative loss of good conduct time imposed as a sanction following disciplinary proceedings spanning the entirety of his incarceration. He also challenges the validity of his conviction and sentence. He seeks “to be reimburst [sic] (GCT) Good Conduct Time credit, and Disallow Good Conduct Time Credit to Vacate Sentence an[d] be immediately release [sic].” (Doc. 1, p. 4).

         The petition is ripe for disposition and, for the reasons that follow, the Court will dismiss the petition.

         I. BACKGROUND

         A. Loss of Good Conduct Time

         Compton “contends that he is allowed 54 [good conduct] days in 1-year an[d] that the DHO Hearing Officer has been taken [sic] more then [sic] the 54 days in one year from 2012-2016.” Specifically, according to his Sentence Monitoring Data, ninety-four days were taken in 2012, 175 were taken in 2013, in 2014, 121 days were taken, 188 days were taken in 2015, in 2016, 336 days were taken, in 2017, 257 days were taken and, 162 days were taken in 2018. (Doc. 1, p. 2). (Id.). He asserts that the excessive taking of his good conduct time through disciplinary sanctions has caused him to lose the privilege of being released to a halfway house and violates his First, Fourth, Fifth and Eighth Amendment rights. (Id. at 3, 4).

         Between September 2012 and March 2019, Compton utilized the administrative review process approximately thirty two times. (Doc. 10-2, pp. 8-36). On January 14, 2019, he filed administrative remedy #964724-F1, raising the issue of the excessive forfeiture of his good conduct time. (Doc. 10-2, Declaration of Michael Figgsganter (“Figgsganter Decl.), ¶ 8; Doc. 10-2, p. 36). The remedy was rejected on that same date. (Id. at ¶ 9; Id.). Compton failed to re-file the administrative remedy or administratively appeal the rejection. (Id. at ¶ 10; Id.).

         B. Challenge to Federal Conviction and Sentence

         Compton also “challenges the validity of his conviction or sentence as imposed under the savings clause 28 U.S.C. §2255(e).” (Doc. 1, p. 2). Initially, the United States District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina imposed a sentence of 280 months imprisonment for possession of a firearm in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922 in the matter of U.S.A. v. Compton, N.C. M.D. No. 1:10-cr-0090. (Doc. 10-2, Figgsganter Decl., ¶ 3; Doc. 10-2, pp. 37-57). Compton appealed. (Id. at p. 46). The United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit vacated the sentence and remanded for resentencing. (Id. at 48). On March 19, 2012, the district court resentenced him to 120 months imprisonment; the court entered the amended judgment on April 11, 2012. (Id. at 49). The appellate court affirmed the sentence. (Id. at 49, 50).

         Thereafter, Compton filed a motion to vacate his sentence pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2255, which the sentencing court denied on November 13, 2015. (Id. at 50, 53). The sentencing court dismissed a second § 2255 motion on November 16, 2016, for failure to obtain certification from the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. (Id. at 55). On July 16, 2018, he again challenged the validity of his conviction and sentence in the sentencing court via a motion to vacate sentence pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2255. (Id. at 56). The sentencing court dismissed the petition on December 3, 2018, based on Compton's failure to obtain certification by filing a Motion for Authorization in the Court of Appeals as required by 28 U.S.C. §§ 2255 and 2244 and Fourth Circuit Local Rule 22(d). (Id. at 57).

         In the matter of Compton v. Ebbert, M.D.PA. No. 1:18-cv-2157, this Court considered a §2241 petition previously filed by Compton. The Court dismissed the petition for lack of jurisdiction on December 4, 2018.

         II. DISCUSSION

         A. Cumulative Loss of Good Conduct Time

         Respondent argues that the petition should be dismissed based on Compton's failure to exhaust his administrative remedies prior to seeking review in federal court. (Doc. 10, pp. 5-8). In general, the Federal Bureau of Prisons' (“BOP”) administrative review remedy program is a multi-tier process that is available to inmates confined in institutions operated by the BOP for review of an issue which relates to any aspect of their confinement. (Doc. 10-2, Figgsganter Decl. at ¶ 5, citing 28 C.F.R. §§ 542.10, et seq.). An inmate initiates the administrative review process by formally presenting their complaint to staff. (Id. citing § 542.13(a)). Staff shall attempt to informally resolve any issues. (Id.) If informal resolution proves unsuccessful, the inmate may file a formal written complaint with the Warden within twenty calendar days of the date on which the basis of the complaint occurred. (Id. citing § 542.14(a)). If the Inmate is dissatisfied with the Warden's response, he may appeal to the BOP's Regional Director within twenty calendar days. (Id., citing 28 C.F.R. ยง 542.15(a)). If dissatisfied with the Regional Director's response, an appeal may be ...


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