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Glenn v. Brown

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

September 7, 2018

DOLEN GLENN, Petitioner,
RICHARD BROWN, Respondent.


          Hon. Jane Magnus-Stinson, Chief Judge

         The petition of Dolen Glenn for a writ of habeas corpus challenges a prison disciplinary proceeding identified as No. WVD 17-06-0265. For the reasons explained in this Entry, Mr. Glenn'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

         The charges against Mr. Glenn arose out of an investigation into materials he was attempting to mail out of the facility and books found in his cell. Some of his evidence requests were denied and he was found guilty of unauthorized possession of offensive materials.

         1. Initiation of the Investigation

         On June 14, 2017, Mr. Glenn attempted to send four books out through the prison mail system. A case manager noticed that one of the books, titled Michael Jackson's Dangerous Liaisons, was on the Indiana Department of Correction's (DOC) list of prohibited books. After noting that the books each appeared to contain references to pedophilia, the case manager confiscated the books and sent them to the Office of Investigations and Intelligence (OII), which directed the case manager to have Mr. Glenn's cell searched for any other offensive books. During the search, prison officials found and confiscated several more books, including Boys Speak Out on Man/Boy Love, published by the North American Man/Boy Love Association (NAMBLA). This publication “contained actual letters and poems written by minors, many as young as 10 years old, about their sexual experiences with adult males.” Dkt. 23-2. Although Mr. Glenn denied ever reading the book, he admitted that all 11 of the confiscated books were his.

         2. The Conduct Report

         After concluding the investigation, OII Investigator Carpenter wrote a conduct report in case WVD 17-06-0265 charging Mr. Glenn with offense B-246, possession of offensive material. The conduct report states:

On 6/14/2017 11 books were delivered to me, Investigator Steve Carpenter by Casework Manager L. Molter. Mrs. Molter requested that an investigation be opened into the content of the books. The books were confiscated from Offender Dolen Glenn # 860216. Upon completion of the investigation (see attached report of investigation), it was determined that Offender Glenn was in direct violation of possession of offensive materials (B-246).

Dkt. 23-1. On June 30, 2017, the screening officer notified Mr. Glenn of the charge of possession of offensive materials and served him with a copy of the conduct report, and a copy of the notice of disciplinary hearing (Screening Report). Mr. Glenn pleaded not guilty and requested a lay advocate, and one was later appointed. The screening officer verified with mental health staff that Mr. Glenn's conduct was unrelated to any mental illness.

         Mr. Glenn was charged with and convicted of offense B-246, which prohibits “[u]nauthorized possession . . . of any symbol, paraphernalia, photograph, or any other item . . . prohibited by the Department of Correction policies, procedures or rules or which is offensive based upon an individual's gender, race, religion, ethnic or personal background . . . .” Adult Disciplinary Process Appendix I: Offenses, at 8 (June 1, 2015) (emphasis added), available at (visited August 24, 2018).

         Prohibited property includes printed material that “threatens the security of the public, facility, or program.” Offender Correspondence, IDOC Policy & Administrative Procedures No. 02-01-103, § XIX, at 20 (Sept. 1, 2015), available at (visited August 24, 2018). Examples of prohibited printed materials are those “[e]ncouraging or instructing in the commission of criminal activity, ” id. at § XIX(F), at 21, and those “[c]ontaining sexually explicit material which by its nature or content poses a threat to the security, good order or discipline of the facility or facilitates criminal activity, ” id. at § XIX(H), at 22. Although written material generally does not qualify as “sexually explicit, ” printed material “with a sexual content” is “reviewed on a case by case basis and is subject to exclusion if it poses a threat to the security or good order of the facility or facilitate[s] criminal activity.” Id. For example, printed materials with written descriptions of “[s]exual conduct or sexual acts that are in violation of state or federal statutes (e.g. rape, child molesting or exploitation, vicarious sexual gratification, sexual battery, incest)” are prohibited. Id.

         3. Mr. Glenn's Requested Evidence

         In anticipation of the hearing, at screening and over the next several days, Mr. Glenn requested the following witnesses:


Expected Testimony/Questions

Timothy Blazier (Mr. Glenn's cellmate)

Mr. Glenn frequently receives books in the mail

Jay Edson Publisher

The books don't contain sexually explicit material or nudity

Mrs. Watkins (Mailroom Worker)

The number of books that come through the mailroom and whether she sees all of them

Insider's Bookstore and Every Farthing Publications

Ships books into the facility

FBI Headquarters

Whether the FBI is investigating NAMBLA and whether NAMBLA's publications contain offensive materials that violate the law

ACLU Attorney Ken Falk

The books don't contain offensive materials

Officer O'Flannery

That he was denied witnesses and evidence

         Mr. Glenn also requested the following documentary evidence:

• Select pages of the DOC's policy on offender correspondence (Policy No. 02-01-103);
• Select pages of the DOC's policy on offender personal property (Policy No. 02-01-101);
• Select pages of DOC's Policy No. 00-01-103;
• Select pages of the DOC's policy on information and standards of conduct for staff ...

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