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Querry v. Warden

United States District Court, S.D. Indiana, Indianapolis Division

May 22, 2018

SHANE QUERRY, Petitioner,
v.
WARDEN, [1]Respondent.

          ORDER DENYING PETITION FOR WRIT OF HABEAS CORPUS AND DIRECTING ENTRY OF FINAL JUDGMENT

          TANYA WALTON PRATT, JUDGE

         The petition of Shane Querry for a writ of habeas corpus challenges a prison disciplinary proceeding identified as No. IYC 17-05-0240. For the reasons explained in this Order, Mr. Querry's habeas petition must be denied.

         A. Overview

         Prisoners 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).

         B. The Disciplinary Proceeding

         On May 25, 2017, Officer W. Elias wrote a Conduct Report charging Mr. Querry with a violation of Code B-212, assault/battery. The Conduct Report states:

On 5/25/2017 at approximately 12:08 pm, I Officer W. Elias was assigned to IHU K-Wing. While offering cell cleaning to the Range I approached cell 19, when the Offender in cell 18 belonging to Querry, Shane #943517, stated “this is what you get for writing me up” and threw an unknown substance from a cup striking my left shoulder area.

Dkt. 1-1 at 11; dkt. 12-1.

         Mr. Querry asserts that the “screening officer refused to screen stating you make my blood boil.” Dkt. 1 at 2. However, Mr. Querry attaches a Screening Report[2] that reflects that Officer M. Richardson notified Mr. Querry on May 27, 2017, that he was charged with B-212, assault/battery, when he received the Screening Report. Dkt. 1-1 at 16. He pleaded not guilty to the charge and requested a lay advocate. He requested to call as witnesses Sergeant McCoy, Sergeant J. Gagnon, and Sergeant Weaver to “tell what happened.” He also requested video review of the K2-range from 12:00 pm - 12:30 pm. Officer Gagnon stated that, “on date and time of said offense, I was working the K1 hallway side of the unit. I did not see anything happen as I was not on the K2 hallway when the said offense occurred.” Dkt. 1-1 at 13 (capitalization modified); dkt. 12-4. Sergeant Weaver stated that, “I don't know. I wasn't there for the incident.” Dkt. 1-1 at 14; dkt. 12-5. Sergeant J. McCoy stated, “I was present at the time and video review was inconclusive due to blurry view when zoomed in.” Dkt. 1-1 at 15, dkt. 12-6.

         The hearing officer viewed the video evidence and completed a summary of the video, which states:

On 05/27/0217 at approximately 4:00 PM, I DHO S. Walker review IHU K wing K2 front Camera for an Incident on 5/25/2017 at approximately 12:08 PM. After reviewing the camera between the times of 12:00 PM thru 12:30 PM, I clearly observed the following:
12:05:43 Officer Elias walks up to cell 19 with a broom, dust pan, and germaway bottle.
12:05:45 Officer Elias looks towards cell 18 taking a step back and dropping broom and dust pan.
12:05:47 Officer Elias takes two more steps back as it appears to be something ...

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