LANE v. SUPERINTENDENT
Entry Denying Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus and Directing Entry of Final Judgment - The petition of Jason C. Lane for a writ of habeas corpus challenges a prison disciplinary proceeding identified as No. NCF 16-12-0045. For the reasons explai ned in this Entry, Lane's habeas petition must be denied. There was no arbitrary action in any aspect of the charge, disciplinary proceedings, or sanctions involved in the events identified in this action, and there was no constitutional infi rmity in the proceeding which entitles Lane to the relief he seeks. Accordingly, Lane's petition for a writ of habeas corpus must be denied and the action dismissed. Judgment consistent with this Entry shall now issue. (See Entry). Copy to Petitioner via US Mail. Signed by Judge Jane Magnus-Stinson on 10/27/2017.(APD)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF INDIANA
JASON C. LANE,
Entry Denying Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus and Directing Entry of Final Judgment
The petition of Jason C. Lane for a writ of habeas corpus challenges a prison disciplinary
proceeding identified as No. NCF 16-12-0045. For the reasons explained in this Entry, Lane’s
habeas petition must be denied.
Prisoners in Indiana custody may not be deprived of good-time credits, Cochran v. Buss,
381 F.3d 637, 639 (7th Cir. 2004) (per curiam), or of credit-earning class, Montgomery v.
Anderson, 262 F.3d 641, 644-45 (7th Cir. 2001), without due process. The due process requirement
is satisfied with the issuance of advance written notice of the charges, a limited opportunity to
present evidence to an impartial decision-maker, a written statement articulating the reasons for
the disciplinary action and the evidence justifying it, and “some evidence in the record” to support
the finding of guilt. Superintendent, Mass. Corr. Inst. v. Hill, 472 U.S. 445, 454 (1985); Wolff v.
McDonnell, 418 U.S. 539, 570-71 (1974); Piggie v. Cotton, 344 F.3d 674, 677 (7th Cir. 2003);
Webb v. Anderson, 224 F.3d 649, 652 (7th Cir. 2000).
The Disciplinary Proceeding
On December 8, 2016, Case Manager (“CM”) Page issued a Report of Conduct to Lane for
a violation of Code B-247, possession of unauthorized personal information. Code B-247 is defined
Possessing or soliciting unauthorized personal information regarding another
offender, ex-offender, victim/witness, potential victim, or current or former staff
person, including but not limited to personnel files, offender packets, medical or
mental health records, photographs, Social Security Numbers, home addresses,
financial information, or telephone numbers, except as authorized by a court order
or as approved in writing by the Facility Head.
IDOC Adult Disciplinary Process, Appendix 1: Offenses, at 8 (emphasis added), available at,
The Report of Conduct stated:
On 12/7/16, CM Page was informed by Offender Davis that he believed Offender
Lane was accessing his Jpay and phone account. He reported that his sister had
received multiple calls and Jpays from the offender asking her to put money on his
(CO Lane’s) account. Offender Lane reported[ly] told the sister Davis had been
robbed of everything but his shoes and the money would be safer on Lane’s acct.
CM Page did call Davis’ sister (Emily) and confirmed that she had been receiving
calls and requests for money. She has asked him to please stop calling. While CM
Page was waiting on phone records to finish report she was informed that Lane had
attempted to call Emily again last night but the call did not go through. Offender
was informed that he would be receiving a conduct.
Dkt. 10-1. Lane received notice of the offense on December 9, 2016. Lane sought assistance of a
lay advocate, and three witnesses including Officer Issac, Offender King, and Offender Davis. He
did not request physical evidence. Officer Issac refused to comment for Lane. Offender King stated
that he had no knowledge of the matter. Offender Davis, the victim, stated that: “Jason was a good
helper, I never asked him to call my sister to put money on my account[,] he did this all on his
own. I would hate to see him lose time over this knowing that he is a short timer.” Dkt. 10-6.
The Disciplinary Hearing was held on December 13, 2016. Lane stated that: “I am guilty
of having the info, I have been helping him for a year and a half.” The Hearing Officer entered a
guilty plea and found Lane guilty of possession of unauthorized personal information, in violation
of Code B-247 after considering the reports, phone evidence, Jpay letters, offender, and witness
statements. The recommended and approved sanctions imposed included loss of privileges and 90
days of lost credit time. A demotion in credit class was recommended, but suspended. The Hearing
Officer imposed the sanctions because of the seriousness of the offense, nature of the conduct, and
degree to which the violation disrupted/endangered the facility.
Lane appealed to Facility Head and the IDOC Final Reviewing Authority, both of which
were denied. He then brought this petition for a writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254.
Lane argues two grounds for relief. First, he asserts that inmate Kenneth Redkey was not a
credible lay advocate because Redkey has displayed animosity towards Lane and took the main
incriminating statement from Sam Davis. Lane argues that Sam Davis claims he never made the
statement. DKt. 1 at 2.
Lane, however, is not entitled to relief on this basis. “[D]ue process d[oes] not require that
the prisoner be appointed a lay advocate, unless ‘an illiterate inmate is involved . . . or where the
complexity of the issue makes it unlikely that the inmate will be able to collect and present the
evidence necessary for an adequate comprehension of the case.’” Miller v. Duckworth, 963 F.2d
1002, 1004 (7th Cir. 1992) (quoting Wolff, 418 U.S. at 570); see Wilson-El v. Finnan, 263 Fed.
Appx. 503, 506 (7th Cir. 2008). A charge stemming from the possession of unauthorized personal
information is straightforward, and Lane is not illiterate, as demonstrated by his appeals and
Petition. Because he does not have a constitutional right to a lay advocate, the alleged deficiency
in his representation does not violate due process.
Lane alleges that the lay advocate fabricated the victim statement of Offender Davis. There
is no evidence to support this allegation. Instead, the record reflects that Offender Davis’ witness
statement is corroborated by the Report of Conduct and supporting documents. No relief is
warranted on this basis.
Lane’s second ground for relief is that he did nothing wrong because he was authorized to
possess Davis’s personal information. He explains that NCCF library supervisor confirmed Lane’s
legitimate involvement with Sam Davis. Ms. Cecil said, “I asked offender Davis if he needed help
and he told me yes and only trusted Lane.” Dkt 1 at 2. In addition, Lane explains that Case Manager
McDaniels sought him out and gave him the personal information of Sam Davis so Lane could aid
him in his daily personal affairs because he is blind. This argument calls into question the
sufficiency of the evidence.
Challenges to the sufficiency of the evidence are governed by the “some evidence”
standard. “[A] hearing officer’s decision need only rest on ‘some evidence’ logically supporting
it and demonstrating that the result is not arbitrary.” Ellison v. Zatecky, 820 F.3d 271, 274 (7th
Cir. 2016); see Eichwedel v. Chandler, 696 F.3d 660, 675 (7th Cir. 2012) (“The some evidence
standard . . . is satisfied if there is any evidence in the record that could support the conclusion
reached by the disciplinary board.”) (citation and quotation marks omitted). The “some evidence”
standard is much more lenient than the “beyond a reasonable doubt” standard. Moffat v. Broyles,
288 F.3d 978, 981 (7th Cir. 2002). “[T]he relevant question is whether there is any evidence in the
record that could support the conclusion reached by the disciplinary board.” Hill, 472 U.S. at 45556.
The record reflects that Lane did assist Offender Davis in personal affairs, but there is no
evidence that such arrangement was authorized by the Superintendent, as required. See Definition
of Code B-247, IDOC Adult Disciplinary Process, Appendix 1: Offenses, at 8,
record shows that Lane admittedly possessed the personal information (telephone number) without
the required approval. Thus there is “some evidence” of his guilt.
“The touchstone of due process is protection of the individual against arbitrary action of
the government.” Wolff, 418 U.S. at 558. There was no arbitrary action in any aspect of the charge,
disciplinary proceedings, or sanctions involved in the events identified in this action, and there
was no constitutional infirmity in the proceeding which entitles Lane to the relief he seeks.
Accordingly, Lane’s petition for a writ of habeas corpus must be denied and the action dismissed.
Judgment consistent with this Entry shall now issue.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
All Electronically Registered Counsel
JASON C. LANE
NEW CASTLE CORRECTIONAL FACILITY - Inmate Mail/Parcels
1000 Van Nuys Road
NEW CASTLE, IN 47362
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