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Lyttle v. Inch

United States District Court, S.D. Indiana, Terre Haute Division

March 21, 2018

MELVIN R. LYTTLE, Plaintiff,
v.
MARK S. INCH, Acting Director Federal Federal Bureau of Prisons, [1] Defendant.

          ENTRY GRANTING DEFENDANT'S MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT AND DIRECTING ENTRY OF FINAL JUDGMENT

          Hon. Jane Magnus-Stinson, Chief Judge

         Plaintiff Melvin R. Lyttle is an inmate confined at the Federal Prison Camp (FPC) in Terre Haute, Indiana. He was convicted of mail and wire fraud, money laundering and related conspiracies. Mr. Lyttle is serving a 14-year term of imprisonment. His projected release date is November 10, 2021, assuming he receives good time credits.

         He brings this action pursuant to the Administrative Procedures Act (APA), 5 U.S.C. §§ 702, 706. The defendant is Mark S. Inch, Director of the Federal Bureau of Prisons, in his official capacity, hereinafter BOP. The BOP has allegedly denied Mr. Lyttle placement in a halfway house, home confinement, or Residential Reentry Center (RRC) and abused its discretion in applying 18 U.S.C. § 3624(c) (the Second Chance Act). The Second Chance Act enlarges the maximum time a prisoner may spend in a halfway house from six months to twelve months. It also gives the BOP authority to place a prisoner in home confinement for the shorter of 10 percent of the term of imprisonment of that prisoner or six months.

         In this action, Mr. Lyttle seeks immediate release to a RRC.

         The BOP argues that it is entitled to summary judgment because Mr. Lyttle's claim is premature and because the BOP's decision is not subject to review under the APA. Mr. Lyttle opposes this motion.

         For the reasons explained below, the BOP's motion for summary judgment, dkt [21], is granted.

         I. Standard of Review

         Summary judgment should be granted “if the movant shows that there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the movant is entitled to a judgment as a matter of law.” Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(a). A “material fact” is one that “might affect the outcome of the suit.” Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248 (1986). The Court views the facts in the light most favorable to the non-moving party and all reasonable inferences are drawn in the non-movant's favor. Ault v. Speicher, 634 F.3d 942, 945 (7th Cir. 2011).

         “The applicable substantive law will dictate which facts are material.” National Soffit & Escutcheons, Inc., v. Superior Systems, Inc., 98 F.3d 262, 265 (7th Cir. 1996) (citing Anderson, 477 U.S. at 248).

         II. Undisputed Facts

         Mr. Lyttle was sentenced in the Western District of New York on October 29, 2010, to 168 months, or 14 years imprisonment. Mr. Lyttle is currently incarcerated at the FPC and his projected release date is November 10, 2021, assuming he receives good time credits.

         III. Discussion

         The BOP argues that Mr. Lyttle's claim for RRC review and placement is premature because Mr. Lyttle is more than three years away from the completion of his sentence. In response, Mr. Lyttle argues that the evidence submitted by the BOP does not use “the pertinent rules for credits in BOP policy.” Dkt 24 at 2. Mr. Lyttle explains that he is entitled to 12 months placement in an RRC or halfway house plus 16 months in home confinement (10 percent of his 168 month sentence). He is mistaken.

         Under 18 U.S.C. § 3624(c), the BOP is charged with preparing prisoners who are approaching the end of their sentences for re-entry into society. The BOP is obligated to consider placing an inmate in an RRC during the final portion of their sentence for up to ...


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