BOCHNER v. SUPERINTENDENT
ENTRY and Order Dismissing Action - The respondent's Motion to Dismiss Petition as Moot [Dkt. 25 ] is granted. Judgment consistent with this Entry shall now issue. (See Order.) Copy to Petitioner via U.S. Mail. Signed by Judge Tanya Walton Pratt on 4/12/2017.(JLS)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF INDIANA
SUPERINTENDENT, New Castle
Case No. 1:15-cv-001764-TWP-DKL
Entry and Order Dismissing Action
This matter is before the Court on Petitioner John Bochner’s Petition for Writ of Habeas
Corpus, with respect to a prison disciplinary proceeding identified as No. NCF 15-06-0146. In
the course of this action, the Indiana Department of Correction reviewed the disciplinary case
and decided to dismiss the disciplinary hearing board’s guilty verdict and rescind the sanctions
including the earned credit time loss. The Respondent argues that because the conviction and
sanctions challenged in this case have been vacated and completely dismissed this action is now
moot and must be dismissed. Bochner has not opposed the Motion to Dismiss Petition as Moot
A case becomes moot, and the federal courts lose subject matter jurisdiction, when a
justiciable controversy ceases to exist between the parties. See Church of Scientology of Cal. v.
United States, 506 U.S. 9, 12 (1992) (“if an event occurs while a case is pending . . . that makes
it impossible for the court to grant ‘any effectual relief whatever’ to a prevailing party, the [case]
must be dismissed.”)(quoting Mills v. Green, 159 U.S. 651, 653 (1895)); Honig v. Doe, 484 U.S.
305, 317 (1988) (grounding mootness doctrine in the Constitution’s Article III requirement that
courts adjudicate only “actual, ongoing cases or controversies”). “A case is moot when issues
presented are no longer ‘live’ or the parties lack a legally cognizable interest in the outcome.”
Erie v. Pap's A.M., 529 U.S. 277, 287 (2000) (internal citations omitted). The development
described above, being that the finding of misconduct was vacated and the sanctions rescinded,
renders the action moot.
A case which is moot must be dismissed for lack of jurisdiction. Board of Educ. of
Downers Grove Grade School Dist. No. 58 v. Steven L., 89 F.3d 464, 467 (7th Cir. 1996), cert.
denied, 117 S. Ct. 1556 (1997). When it is determined that a court lacks jurisdiction, its only
course of action is to announce that fact and dismiss the case. Steel Co. v. Citizens for a Better
Environment, 523 U.S. 83, 94 (1998)(“’Jurisdiction is power to declare the law, and when it
ceases to exist, the only function remaining to the court is that of announcing the fact and
dismissing the cause.’”)(quoting Ex parte McCardle, 7 Wall, 506, 514, 19 L.Ed. 264 (1868)).
The respondent’s Motion to Dismiss Petition as Moot [Dkt.25] is granted. Judgment
consistent with this Entry shall now issue.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
Electronic distribution to counsel of record via CM/ECF and by U.S. mail to:
NEW CASTLE - CF
NEW CASTLE CORRECTIONAL FACILITY - Inmate Mail/Parcels
1000 Van Nuys Road
NEW CASTLE, IN 47362
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