BRILEY v. LYNCH et al
OPINION. Signed by Judge Renee Marie Bumb on 4/21/2017. (tf, n.m.)
NOT FOR PUBLICATION
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
DISTRICT OF NEW JERSEY
JAY BONANZA BRILEY,
MR. ORTIZ, Warden,
FCI Fort Dix,
Civ. Action No. 16-5571 (RMB)
BUMB, District Judge
Jersey, filed a petition for writ of habeas corpus under 28
U.S.C. § 2241.
(Pet., ECF No. 1.)
Briley contends that Federal
Bureau of Prisons (“BOP”) staff improperly renewed a “Greater
classification, precluding him from transferring to a minimum1
The proper respondent to a petition under 28 U.S.C. § 2241 is
the petitioner’s immediate custodian. Rumsfeld v. Padilla, 542
U.S. 426, 434-35 (2004).
Therefore, the Court will terminate
the improper respondents from this action:
Loretta Lynch, Mr.
Kane, Director of Bureau of Prisons; Mr. Robinson, Unit Manager;
and Mr. Olsen, Case Manager.
The Court has also corrected the
spelling of the warden’s name in the caption, as provided in the
security prison camp.
(Id., ¶¶14, 16, 19, 25-27.)
participation in the Veteran Outreach Treatment Program, and the
Veterans Reentry Program.
(Pet., ECF No. 1, ¶33.)
seeks one year early release based on his RDAP treatment.
Briley filed five Addenda to his petition, submitting
barriers to permit transfer to a camp, and establishing Briley’s
(Addenda, ECF Nos. 3, 5, 6, 7, 10.)
Respondent filed Respondent’s Answer to Petition for a Writ
of Habeas Corpus, opposing all relief.
(Resp.’s Answer to Pet.
for a Writ of Habeas Corpus (“Answer”) ECF No. 12.)
filed a reply, followed by a motion for summary judgment (ECF
No. 14), two motions to accept new evidence (ECF Nos. 18, 19),
and two motions to compel. (ECF Nos. 21, 26.)3
The first motion
In his petition, Briley also sought money damages based on
deprivation of transfer to a camp.
(Pet., ECF No. 1, ¶35-36.)
By Order dated September 23, 2016, this Court determined that
Briley’s petition for habeas relief could proceed, but he must
file a separate civil rights action, after exhausting his
administrative remedies, if he intends to seek money damages for
a constitutional violation. (ECF No. 2 at 2.) Briley responded
by letter to the Court, asking whether he must also exhaust his
administrative remedies for his § 2241 petition, and if so,
would the Court hold the petition in abeyance. (ECF No. 4.) The
Court addresses this request in Section II.C.2 below.
On April 17, 2017, Briley submitted a letter requesting that
the Court hear his motions entered at Docket Entry Numbers 14,
to compel is for discovery4 (ECF No. 21), and the second motion
includes the Part B Response to Remedy No. 886002-F2; a request
to the Court for a copy of a filed motion (ECF No. 18); a copy
of Program Statement 5800.17; and an inmate request to staff
dated April 4, 2015.
(ECF No. 19.)
For the reasons discussed below, the Court will dismiss the
habeas petition and the pending motions.
21, and 25, on May 1, 2017, the date set for hearing by the
Court. (ECF No. 28.) Briley misconstrued the docket entries as
setting a hearing date.
Each docket entry states “Unless
otherwise directed by the Court, this motion will be decided on
the papers and no appearances are required.”
The Court will
decide these motions on the papers, without a hearing, pursuant
to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 78.
The next day, Briley
submitted an application for writ of habeas corpus ad
testificandum, asking that he be brought before the Court to
present his case. (ECF No. 30.) An evidentiary hearing is not
required in this matter, and it will be decided on the papers.
See Opara v. U.S., 423 F. App’x 116 (3d Cir. 2011) (evidentiary
hearing was unnecessary where decision did not turn on factual
In his motion to compel, Briley alleged it had been more than
thirty days since he issued subpoenas to the National Park
Service, and he had not received a response.
(ECF No. 21.)
Rule 6(a), (b) of the Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases in the
United States District Courts, applicable to proceedings under
28 U.S.C. § 2241 through Rule 1(b), provides that discovery
under the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure in a habeas proceeding
may only be had upon leave of Court, after good cause is shown.
Briley did not seek leave of Court to issue subpoenas to the
National Park Service. In any event, the motion is dismissed as
moot because Briley did not raise a cognizable habeas claim that
is ripe for review.
altercation with United States Park Police. United States v.
Briley, 770 F.3d 267, 269-70 (4th Cir. 2014) (“Briley I”).
Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals stated the relevant facts:
During the fracas on the driver’s side of
the car, Briley kicked [Officer] Brancato in
the abdomen. Brancato then tried to loosen
Briley's position in the vehicle by striking
him on his side. As the effort to subdue
Briley continued, Briley placed another
impairment of his pancreas and lost his
Briley I, 770 F.3d at 270.
A grand jury in the Eastern District
obstructing and impeding a federal officer, in violation of 18
U.S.C. § 111, and one count of disorderly conduct – obscene
acts, in violation of 36 C.F.R. § 2.34(a)(2).
convicted by a jury on all four counts.
Id. at 271.
On October 22, 2013, the district court sentenced Briley to
78 months in prison, three years of supervised release, and
(Declaration of Tara Moran (“Moran Decl.”), ECF
No. 3, Ex. 1 at 2); Briley I, 770 F.3d at 271.
hearing at which expert medical testimony was presented, the
sentencing court determined that “the trauma from Briley’s kicks
had caused Brancato’s pancreatitis, which in turn had compelled
the removal of his gallbladder.” Id.
Fourth Circuit affirmed.
Briley appealed, and the
Id. at 277.
In September 2014, while Briley was incarcerated at FCI
Loretto, he filed a habeas petition under 28 U.S.C. § 2241 in
the Western District of Pennsylvania.
Briley v. Holder, Civ.
Action No. 3:14-cv-0193, 2015 WL 926560, at *1 (W.D. Pa 2015)
Briley challenged the BOP’s application of a
classification and sought an order that would allow him to serve
his sentence on home confinement or at a federal prison camp.
The district court
dismissed Briley’s habeas petition for lack of subject matter
Briley appealed, and on January 14, 2016, a panel of the
Third Circuit issued a non-precedential decision affirming the
district court’s decision.
Briley v. Att. Gen. U.S., 632 F.
App’x 84, 85 (3d Cir. 2016) (“Briley III”).
The court held that
cognizable in a § 2241 petition because he does not challenge
the basic fact or duration of his imprisonment, which is the
‘essence of habeas.’”
Id. (citing Preiser v. Rodriguez, 411
U.S. 475, 484 (1973)).
The court further held that “prisoners
have no constitutional right to a particular classification.”
United States v. Briley, 631 F. App’x 156, 156 (4th
Cir. 2016) (per curiam) (affirming denial of motion for new
trial and denying certificate of appealability with respect to §
2255 motion); Briley v. Lynch, Civ. Action No. 16-4274 (RMB),
2016 WL 4107691, at *2 (D.N.J. Aug. 1, 2016) (dismissing § 2241
petition for lack of jurisdiction where petitioner sought to
challenge his conviction after denial of his § 2255 motion).
If Briley receives all available good conduct time, his
projected release date is December 31, 2018.
1 at 2.)
(Moran Decl., Ex.
Inmates are eligible for twelve months of placement in
a residential reentry center (or “RRC”), and they are typically
projected release dates. (Id.)
At the time Respondent filed its
(Declaration of Frederick Olsen (“Olsen Decl.”),
ECF No. 12-2, ¶7.)
Therefore, he had not been considered for
RRC placement, nor was he eligible for immediate transfer to
such a facility. (Id.)
Furthermore, Briley never participated
in the BOP’s Residential Drug Abuse Program (“RDAP”); therefore
he is ineligible for the one-year early release incentive under
18 U.S.C. § 3621(e). (Id., ¶8; Attachment 4 at 1.)
BOP Custody Classification Policies
The BOP has the authority to designate the place of an
facility to another at any time.
18 U.S.C. § 3621(b).
making placement determinations, the BOP must consider, among
other factors, the resources of the facility contemplated, the
nature and circumstances of the offense, and the characteristics
of the prisoner.
18 U.S.C. § 3621(b)(1), (2), & (3).
BOP institutions are classified into five security levels:
minimum, low, medium, high, and administrative.
Before designating an inmate to an
institution, the BOP assesses the inmate’s particular security
and program needs and certain administrative factors.
The BOP then designates an inmate to an institution based
on these factors. (Id. at 3.)
requires, the BOP calculates a security point score for the
“Public Safety Factors.”
(Id. at 2-3.)
A Management Variable
“is required when placement has been made and/or maintained at
score — a score which may not completely/accurately reflect his
or her security needs.”
Id., Ch. 2 at 3.
Application of a
approval of BOP’s Designations and Sentence Computation Center
Variable of “Greater Security” may be applied to an inmate when
security risk than the assigned security level.
(Id., Ch. 5 at
Public Safety Factors provide relevant factual information
regarding the inmate’s offense, sentence, criminal history, or
institutional behavior that requires additional security measure
to ensure safety of the public. (Id., Ch. 5 at 7.)
range, according to the Offense Severity Scale,5 will be housed
in at least a low-security-level institution unless the PSF has
In determining the severity of the inmate’s
offense, BOP staff must consider all offense behavior, not only
the current offense.
(Id., Ch. 6, at 3-4.)
The “Offense Severity Scale”
Program Statement 5100.08.
After assignment of
assigned to an appropriate institution in accordance with the
custody level classification.
(Id., at 16.)
In this case, the DSCC applied a MGTV to Briley based on
his offense of conviction, assaulting, obstructing and impeding
a federal officer.
(Olsen Decl. ¶3; Attachment 1 at 1); Briley
II, 2015 WL 926560, at *1.
Therefore, Briley was designated to
a low-security institution (FCI Loretto in Pennsylvania), rather
than a minimum-security camp. (Olsen Decl., ¶3.)
approved the transfer.
Special Investigatory Services (“SIS”) investigation.
In November 2015, Briley was transferred from FCI Loretto
to FCI Fort Dix, another low-security facility. (Olsen Decl. ¶4;
Attachment 2 at 1.) During his program review at FCI Fort Dix,
his unit team realized that Briley’s instant offense conduct
fell within the Greatest Severity range on the Offense Severity
Scale in Program Statement 5100.08, which required BOP staff to
apply a “Greatest Severity” PSF. (Id., ¶5.)
bodily injury intended or permanent or life threatening bodily
injury resulting” as one of the offenses for which a Greatest
Severity Public Safety Factor must be applied.
App. A, at 1.
According to Briley’s Presentence Investigation
Report (“PSR”), two officers sustained serious bodily injury due
to his actions; one required a feeding tube and ultimately had
his gallbladder removed as a result of the assault.
Decl. ¶6; see also Briley I, 770 F.3d at 270-71.
The Unit Team
submitted a request to the DSCC to apply a MGTV. (Olsen, Decl.,
Because the MGTV was no longer necessary in light of the
PSF request,6 BOP staff requested removal of Briley’s MGTV. (Id.)
The DSCC approved application of the PSF, and removed the MGTV.
Exhaustion of Administrative Remedies
The BOP has a four-step process for federal inmates to
exhaust administrative remedies.
(Moran Decl. ¶3); 28 C.F.R. §
resolve his dispute with prison staff.
28 C.F.R. § 542.13.
request to the warden of his institution, within twenty days of
If the administrative remedy request is denied, the inmate
A PSF has no expiration date and will remain with an inmate
throughout his incarceration unless waived by the DSCC. (Olsen
within twenty days of the date of the warden’s response. 28
C.F.R. § 542.15(a).
If the Regional Director denies the appeal,
the inmate may appeal that decision to BOP’s Central Office,
Regional Director’s response.
The administrative remedy
process is not fully exhausted until an inmate’s final appeal is
considered by the Central Office.
Claims challenging security classification
not cognizable under 28 U.S.C. § 2241.
Briley previously filed a petition for a writ of habeas
Briley III, 632 F. App’x at 84.
The district court dismissed
affirmed in a non-precedential opinion.
The Third Circuit
We agree with the District Court that
classification is not cognizable in a § 2241
petition because he does not challenge the
basic fact or duration of his imprisonment,
which is the “essence of habeas.” See
Preiser v. Rodriguez, 411 U.S. 475, 484, 93
S.Ct. 1827, 36 L.Ed.2d 439 (1973). Nor does
Briley's claim challenge the “execution” of
jurisdictional ambit described in Woodall v.
Federal Bureau of Prisons, 432 F.3d 235, 241
(3d Cir.2005). Woodall held that a prisoner
could bring a § 2241 petition challenging a
BOP regulation that limited placement in a
Community Corrections Center. We noted that
“[c]arrying out a sentence through detention
in [such a facility was] very different than
carrying out a sentence in an ordinary penal
institution.” Id. at 243. Specifically, we
determined that Woodall sought something
observing that his claims “crossed[ed] the
line beyond a challenge to, for example, a
garden variety prison transfer.” Id. Here,
we agree with the District Court that
Briley's claims are much more akin to the
“garden variety” custody levels that Woodall
indicated were excluded from the scope of §
2241. Relatedly, we note, prisoners have no
classification. Moody v. Daggett, 429 U.S.
78, 88 n. 9, 97 S.Ct. 274, 50 L.Ed.2d 236
(1976). Thus, the District Court correctly
dismissed Briley's § 2241 petition. See
Leamer v. Fauver, 288 F.3d 532, 542 (3d Cir.
condition of confinement such that a finding
in plaintiff's favor would not alter his
sentence or undo his conviction, [a civil
rights action] is appropriate.”).
Bureau of Prisons (“BOP”) staff improperly renewed a MGTV and
precluding him from transferring to a minimum-security prison
camp, are not cognizable under 28 U.S.C. § 2241.
policy nor the Due Process Clause gives a prisoner a liberty
interest in a particular housing location or custody level while
under the jurisdiction of correctional authorities”) (citations
omitted); Briley III, 632 F. App’x at 85 (noting that inmates
(RMB), 2013 WL 356012, at *3 (D.N.J. Jan. 29, 2013) (same); Ford
v. Hughes, No. 11-7029 (RMB), 2012 WL 3228714, at *3 (D.N.J.
Aug. 3, 2012) (same).
Briley’s claims challenging the renewal
of the MGTV and PSF are dismissed.
Dismissal Without Prejudice
remedies before seeking habeas relief pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §
Moscato v. Fed. Bureau of Prisons, 98 F.3d 757, 760-62
(3d Cir. 1996).
The Third Circuit requires exhaustion for three
(1) allowing the appropriate agency to
develop a factual record and apply its
expertise facilitates judicial review; (2)
permitting agencies to grant the relief
requested conserves judicial resources; and
(3) providing agencies the opportunity to
Id. at 761-62 (citations omitted).
Respondent asserts Briley has not sought an administrative
remedy for his claims concerning RRC placement or early release
eligibility under RDAP.
(Moran Decl., ¶6.)
that he failed to exhaust administrative remedies, and seeks an
abeyance of the petition.
See supra n. 2.
purposes of conserving judicial time when an agency might grant
the relief sought through the administrative remedy procedure.
prejudice to Briley raising his claims after he has exhausted
For the reasons discussed above, Briley’s application for a
writ of habeas corpus ad testificandum is denied (ECF No. 30);
claims challenging the BOP’s renewal of a MGTV and assignment of
a PSF are dismissed for lack of jurisdiction; his claims for RRC
placement and early release for RDAP treatment are dismissed
Briley’s motion to compel discovery (ECF No.
21), motion to compel amendment of his PSR (ECF No. 26), motions
to accept new evidence (18, 19), and motion for summary judgment
(ECF No. 14) are dismissed as moot.
See Brown v. Philadelphia
Housing Authority, 350 F.3d 338, 343 (3d Cir. 2003) (“[m]ootness
has two aspects: (1) the issues presented are no longer live, or
(2) the parties lack a cognizable interest in the outcome”)
An appropriate Order follows.
Dated: April 21, 2017.
s/Renée Marie Bumb
Renée Marie Bumb
United States District Judge
Disclaimer: Justia Dockets & Filings provides public litigation records from the federal appellate and district courts. These filings and docket sheets should not be considered findings of fact or liability, nor do they necessarily reflect the view of Justia.
Why Is My Information Online?