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Jennings v. Schult

March 27, 2009

WAYNE JENNINGS,
v.
DEBORAH SCHULT, WARDEN, RAY BROOK CORRECTIONAL INSTITUTION, RESPONDENT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: James K. Singleton, Jr. United States District Judge

MEMORANDUM DECISION

Petitioner Wayne Jennings, a federal prisoner appearing pro se, has filed a petition for a writ of habeas corpus under 28 U.S.C. § 2241.*fn1 Jennings is currently in the custody of the Bureau of Prisons ("BOP") incarcerated at the Ray Brook Correctional Center. Respondent has filed her Answer and Jennings has filed his traverse.

I. BACKGROUND/PRIOR PROCEEDINGS

On June 16, 2002, Jennings was arrested by state authorities in Camden, New Jersey, for Unlawful Possession of a Handgun, and Possession of a Controlled Dangerous Substance (CDS). The circumstances of this arrest also resulted in the instant federal offense of Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon. Jennings was released from state custody, via bond on July 22, 2002. On September 3, 3002, Jennings was arrested in Camden County, New Jersey, for the unrelated state offenses of Unlawful Possession of a Weapon, Possession of a Defaced Weapon, and Certain Persons Not to Have a Weapon. The state charges resulting from the June 16, 2002, arrest were administratively dismissed September 6, 2002. Jennings was temporarily transferred to federal custody pursuant to a writ of habeas corpus ad prosequendum, and sentenced in the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey on April 11, 2003, to a 120-month Petitioner, term of imprisonment for Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon. Jennings was returned to the custody of state authorities immediately after receiving his federal sentence. On June 20, 2003, Jennings was sentenced in the Superior Court, Camden County, New Jersey, to a five-year state term of confinement, without the possibility of release on parole. The state court ordered the term to operate concurrently with the previously imposed federal sentence, and that Jennings be given credit for the time spent in state presentence custody from September 4, 2002, to June 19, 2003. Jennings appealed his federal conviction, and on May 19, 2005, the Third Circuit remanded the matter to the district court. On August 18, 2005, the District of New Jersey held a resentencing hearing and re-imposed the 120-month sentence, without specifying whether the sentence was to be served concurrently or consecutively to his now previously imposed state sentence. Upon the expiration of his five-year state sentence on September 4, 2007, the state relinquished custody of Jennings to federal authorities.

The BOP prepared a sentence computation for Jennings, based on a 120-month term of imprisonment beginning September 4, 2007 (the date received in exclusive federal custody), with prior custody (jail) credit from June 16, 2002, to July 22, 2002. Thereafter, BOP prepared an updated sentence computation for Petitioner, based on a 120-month term of imprisonment beginning September 4, 2007 (the date received in exclusive federal custody), with jail credit from June 16, 2002, to July 22, 2002, and for September 3, 2002. Based on this calculation, Jennings is currently scheduled for release from Bureau of Prisons custody, via Good Conduct Time Release, on April 13, 2016.

After New Jersey relinquished custody of Jennings to the BOP, he requested that the BOP nunc pro tunc designate his state prison as a place of federal confinement. The BOP denied that designation.

II. ISSUES PRESENTED/DEFENSES

In his petition Jennings challenges denial of his request that the BOP designate the state prison as a place of confinement nunc pro tunc. Respondent has not pled any affirmative defenses.

III. STANDARD OF REVIEW

Review of the action of the BOP on a request to designate a state prison as a place of federal confinement is limited to abuse of discretion.*fn2 "The decision whether to designate a facility as a place of federal detention is plainly and unmistakably within the BOP's discretion and we cannot lightly second guess a deliberate and informed determination by the agency charged with administering federal prison policy."*fn3

IV. DISCUSSION

The Administrative Remedy Section, Federal Bureau of Prisons,*fn4 in denying Jennings' administrative appeal held:

This is in response to your Central Office Administrative Remedy Appeal, in which you claim you request a nunc pro tunc (retroactive) designation to the State of New Jersey for concurrent service of the federal sentence.

We have reviewed your request pursuant to Barden v. Keohane, 921 F. 2d 476 (3rd Cir. 1990) and according to the factors set forth in Title 18 U.S.C. ยง3621(b). In your case, we have determined the relevant factors under the statute are (2), (3), and (4). With respect to factor (2), the nature and circumstances of the offense; you were arrested by officers of the Camden City, New Jersey, Police Department on June 16, 2002, and charged with Unlawful Possession of a Handgun and Possession of a Controlled Dangerous Substance. The gun ...


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