Andrews v. Pfister et al
MEMORANDUM Opinion and Order: For the reasons stated in this memorandum opinion and order, all of Dkt. Nos. 32, 33 and 34 are rejected, with Andrews' Dkt. Nos. 32 and 33 motions being denied out of hand. Signed by the Honorable Milton I. Shadur on 9/13/2017:Mailed notice(clw, )
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF ILLINOIS
EUGENE ANDREWS (K-56087),
CARRIE ANDERSON, Officer of the
Administrative Review Board Office, et al.,
Case No. 16 C 7671
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
Prisoner plaintiff Eugene Andrews ("Andrews"), approaching the windup of his
August 31, 1999 sentence of 15 years (culminating in a 3-year Mandatory Supervised Release
("MSR") term) on three counts of attempted murder, initiated this action on July 28, 2016 with a
pro se Complaint charging that he was being held beyond his scheduled out date. After
Andrews' request for in forma pauperis status had been denied because his financial disclosure
revealed that he was able to pay the filing fee in full, rather than on the installment basis
prescribed for prisoner plaintiffs under 28 U.S.C. § 1915, he paid the $400 filing fee, after which
this Court granted his motion for legal counsel and obtained the name of a member of the
District Court trial bar -- John Ferjak ("Ferjak") -- to represent him.
Attorney Ferjak addressed his responsibility in a professional manner, filing an Amended
Complaint on Andrews' behalf and looking into the merits (or, in this instance, what proved to be
the lack of substantive merit) of Andrews' claim. It turned out that Andrews, who was faced
with a new murder charge in April 2014 (after he had already been released from custody on his
earlier attempted murder sentence in December 2012, subject to the 3-year MSR), suffered a
revocation of the MSR because of the new murder charge. That revocation required Andrews to
finish the remainder of his MSR sentence (just under 21 months) in the custody of the Illinois
Department of Corrections, with a scheduled release date of January 16, 2016.
As Andrews' Complaint in this action would have it, his continued detention beyond that
release date violated his rights under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. But as Ferjak's research in Andrews'
case disclosed, Andrews had earlier been charged and found guilty in 2014 and 2015 of three
violations of the Illinois Administrative Code (the "Code"), Title 20 Section 504 et seq. -violations involving (1) assaults on several persons, including prison staff members and another
inmate, and (2) disobedience to a direct order. Under the Code, the Adjustment Committee
having the responsibility to deal with such violations is obligated to ("shall") take appropriate
disciplinary action, which can include (a) the revocation of a prisoner's statutory sentence credit
or (b) the recommendation of an adjustment of provisionally awarded supplemental sentence
credit. In Andrews' case the discipline that was imposed was the revocation of his good conduct
credit for a collective period of one year and nine months.
That combination of circumstances required Andrews, despite his having completed his
earlier-described term for violation of the MSR, to serve the 21-month term of his revoked good
conduct credit as well. And that being the case, attorney Ferjak quite understandably viewed
Andrews' claim of wrongful detention to be entirely unfounded -- frivolous in the legal sense -so he filed a motion to withdraw his representation of Andrews, coupled with a supporting
memorandum pursuant to Anders v. California, 386 U.S. 738 (1967). 1
This Court has attached copies of that motion and memorandum (collectively
Dkt. No. 27) as Ex. 1 to this memorandum order.
On July 12, 2017 this Court therefore (1) issued a memorandum order granting attorney
Ferjak's motion to withdraw as Andrews' counsel and (2) directed Andrews to file a submission
on or before August 16 as to why this action should not be dismissed for the reasons advanced by
attorney Ferjak in identifying Andrews' failure to state a claim. With August 16 having come
and gone with no such submission having been received from Andrews, this Court issued an
August 21, 2017 memorandum order (Dkt. No. 30) dismissing this action and terminating the
Because of a brief delay in the processing of filed documents in the Clerk's Office, it was
a day or two later before this Court received copies of three documents, handprinted by Andrews
and received in the Clerk's Office on August 18 (Dkt. Nos. 32, 33 and 34): a "Motion for
Appointment of Counsel Pursuant to Tedder v. Fairman," a "Motion To Proceed Pro Se Without
Counsel" and a "Memorandum in Support" of the last-described motion. This Court will not of
course reject those recent filings by Andrews on timeliness grounds, but will instead turn to them
as a substantive matter.
In that respect Andrews' filings have disclosed an utter failure on his part to understand
the explanation provided by attorney Ferjak's submissions set out in Dkt. No. 27 and summarized
in this opinion, so that Andrews has not advanced any reason why the fundamental defect
disclosed in that explanation is not fatal to his lawsuit. Accordingly all of Dkt. Nos. 32, 33 and
34 are rejected, with Andrews' Dkt. Nos. 32 and 33 motions being denied out of hand.
Date: September 13, 2017
Milton I. Shadur
Senior United States District Judge
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