United States District Court, S.D. Indiana, Indianapolis Division
ENTRY GRANTING PETITION FOR WRIT OF HABEAS
J. McKINNEY, JUDGE
petition of Rafael Torres for a writ of habeas corpus
challenges a prison disciplinary proceeding identified as No.
IYC 16-02-0090. For the reasons explained in this Entry,
Torres's habeas petition must be
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 30, 2016, Investigator P. Prulhiere issued a Report
of Conduct charging Torres with possession or use of a cell
phone in violation of Code A-121. The Report of Conduct
On January 30, 2016 at approximately 1:00 pm, I, Investigator
P. Prulhiere, completed an investigation of Offender Rafael
Torres 144059 for use or possession of a cell phone. Due to
the evidence I have collected, I have found sufficient
evidence to charge Offender Torres with use or possession of
a cell phone.
Report of Investigation, also written by Investigator
Prulhiere, provides a detailed description of Prulhiere's
investigation of Torres.
On January 30, 2016, I, Investigator P. Prulhiere, completed
an examination of evidence collected from a search conducted
on January 5, 2016 in Housing Unit West L Unit. This
information was screened through the Facility Intelligence
System and a primary suspect phone number was found on
another cell phone evidence case recovered on September 25,
2015, Evidence ID number S15-09-20. This information was not
available, prior to investigation case number 16-IYC-0008,
until an investigation of parties associated with Offender
Torres and his JPAY and GTL contacts was conducted. GTL
recorded phone calls for Offender Torres were extracted from
the GTL database and reviewed. In reviewing the phone calls,
it was found that Offender Torres had absolutely no phone
calls conducted through GTL between January 21, 2015 and
September 15, 2015 (This supports use of cell phone
device.)[.] On January 6, 2016 at 8:29pm, Offender Torres
made a call to 510-750-9115 which is claimed by Offender
Torres to be Nicole Garcia. (This was confirmed by me on
January 28, 2016 after having conducted a phone interview
with Nicole [illegible]) Nicole Garcia is also registered in
JPay using the phone number 209-451-6596 which was found as
contact name “Anita” in cell phone evidence
S15-09-20. The phone number 209-451-6596 was found in the mix
of data comprised of completed calls, missed calls, attempted
calls, texts, messages, contact list and images in the
primary memory of cell phone S15-09-20. Most recently,
209-451-6596 was included in the same mixture of data
collected from cell phone evidence S16-01-07 with a contact
name of “CALI” and has not been found associated
to any other offender. As a result of this accumulated
information and on-going investigation issues associated with
Offender Torres as reported in Investigation Division Case
Number 16-IYC-0008, I have found sufficient reason to charge
Offender Torres with use or possession of a cell phone marked
as evidence S15-09-20.
was notified of the charge on February 3, 2016, when he was
served with the Report of Conduct and the Notice of
Disciplinary Hearing. The Screening Officer noted that Torres
did not request any witnesses but requested “all
evidence, ” specifically, “where was evidence
S15-09-20 recovered from?” and “where was Torres
housed on 9/25/15?” The Report of Investigation was
also listed as physical evidence.
Hearing Officer conducted a disciplinary hearing on February
17, 2016. The Report of Disciplinary Hearing reflects that
Torres stated: “I plead guilty.” The Hearing
Officer found Torres guilty of use or possession of a cell
phone in violation of Code A-121 after considering the staff
reports, investigation report, and the statement of offender.
The recommended and approved sanction imposed included loss
of privileges, 180 days of lost credit time, and imposition
of a demotion in credit class from class 1 to class 2. The
Hearing Officer imposed the sanctions because of the
frequency of the conduct and likelihood of the sanction
having a corrective effect on the offender's future
appeals were denied and he filed the present petition for a
writ of habeas corpus.