United States District Court, S.D. Indiana, Terre Haute Division
ENTRY DENYING PETITION FOR WRIT OF HABEAS CORPUS AND
DIRECTING ENTRY OF FINAL JUDGMENT
William T. Lawrence, Judge
petition of David Davenport for a writ of habeas corpus
challenges a prison disciplinary proceeding identified as No.
ISF 16-02-0062. For the reasons explained in this Entry, Mr.
Davenport's habeas petition must be denied.
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
January 22, 2016, Sgt. Hill wrote a Conduct Report charging
Mr. Davenport with assault/battery in violation of Code
B-212. The Conduct Report states:
On 1/22/2016 at approx. 2300hrs I Sgt. J. Hill #295 was
reviewing cameras for a altercation that took place in 11
North on the A Side when I observed the following: At
approximately 1815 I Sgt. Hill #295 observed Offender
Davenport, David #904991 throwing multiple closed fist
punches at Offender Farnsworth, John #224784 on the A Side of
11 North in the walkway. During this incident Offender
Farnsworth # 224784 was backing up and trying to block the
punches. Offender Davenport continued to throw multiple
closed fist punches at Offender Farnsworth leading into Cube
3 on the A Side of 11 North. Offender Davenport was notified
of all reports written and identified by his state issued
Dkt. 7-1 at 1.
Davenport was notified of the charge on February 3, 2016,
when he received the Screening Report. He plead not guilty to
the charge, and he requested video evidence.
hearing was held on February 5, 2016. Mr. Davenport denied
guilt, but based on Mr. Davenport's statement, the staff
reports, and the video evidence, the hearing officer found
Mr. Davenport guilty. The hearing officer recommended and
approved sanctions including a sixty-day earned-credit-time
Davenport appealed to Facility Head and the IDOC Final
Reviewing Authority, but both of his appeals were denied. He
then brought this petition for a writ of habeas corpus
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254.
Davenport raises several claims in his habeas petition, which
the Court construes and summarizes as follows: (1) there was
insufficient evidence to convict him of assault or battery;
(2) he was denied an impartial decisionmaker; and (3) he was
subject to racial discrimination because he is black and the
other offender involved in the incident who is white was not
charged. The respondent contends that the latter two claims
are unexhausted and that the remaining claim lacks merit. The
Court begins with the issue of exhaustion and procedural
default before turning to the merits of the remaining claims.