SANGSTER v. SUPERINTENDENT
Entry Dismissing Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus - 25 Motion to Dismiss is granted and this action is dismissed as moot. Judgment consistent with this Entry shall now issue. See entry for details. Signed by Judge Tanya Walton Pratt on 9/20/2017. See entry for details. (Copy mailed to Petitioner) (MEJ)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF INDIANA
Entry Dismissing Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus
The petitioner filed a writ of habeas corpus challenging a prison disciplinary proceeding,
IYC 17-02-0016. The respondent has filed a motion to dismiss arguing that the challenged
disciplinary proceeding and the sanctions resulting therefrom have been vacated, making this
action moot. The petitioner has not responded and the time in which to do so has elapsed. For the
reasons set forth below, the respondent’s motion to dismiss, dkt. , is granted and this action
is dismissed as moot.
The petitioner was subject to disciplinary proceeding IYC 17-02-0016, in which he was
found guilty. His sanctions included the deprivation of 180 days earned credit time and the
demotion from credit class I to II. He filed the instant petition for a writ of habeas corpus on March
27, 2017. While the instant case was pending, the Indiana Department of Correction final
reviewing authority, on August 25, 2017, vacated the petitioner’s disciplinary conviction and
sanctions and designated the case for re-hearing.
“A case becomes moot when it no longer presents a case or controversy under Article III,
Section 2 of the Constitution.” Eichwedel v. Curry, 700 F.3d 275, 278 (7th Cir. 2012). “In general
a case becomes moot when the issues presented are no longer live or the parties lack a legally
cognizable interest in the outcome.” Id. (citation and quotation marks omitted). A federal court
may issue a writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254 only if it finds the applicant “is in
custody in violation of the Constitution or laws or treaties of the United States.” 28 U.S.C.
§ 2254(a) (emphasis added). Therefore, a habeas action becomes moot if the Court can no longer
“affect the duration of [the petitioner’s] custody.” White v. Ind. Parole Bd., 266 F.3d 759, 763
(7th Cir. 2001).
Here, the petitioner’s conviction and sanctions were vacated and thus can no longer affect
the duration of his custody. Accordingly, the petitioner’s habeas action is moot. See id. An action
which is moot must be dismissed for lack of jurisdiction. See Diaz v. Duckworth, 143 F.3d 345,
347 (7th Cir. 1998).
Judgment consistent with this Entry shall now issue.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
Electronic distribution to counsel of record via CM/ECF to:
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PLAINFIELD CORRECTIONAL FACILITY
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