United States District Court, N.D. Indiana, South Bend Division
OPINION AND ORDER
P. SIMON, JUDGE
Henley, Jr., a prisoner without a lawyer, filed a habeas
corpus petition challenging a disciplinary hearing in which a
Disciplinary Hearing Officer found him guilty of assault and
battery in violation of Indiana Department of Correction
(IDOC) policy B-212. ECF 6 at 1. As a result, he was
sanctioned with the loss of 30 days earned credit time.
Fourteenth Amendment guarantees prisoners certain procedural
due process rights in prison disciplinary hearings: (1)
advance written notice of the charges; (2) an opportunity to
be heard before an impartial decision-maker; (3) an
opportunity to call witnesses and present documentary
evidence in defense, when consistent with institutional
safety and correctional goals; and (4) a written statement by
the fact-finder of evidence relied on and the reasons for the
disciplinary action. Wolff v. McDonnell, 418 U.S.
539 (1974). To satisfy due process, there must also be
“some evidence” in the record to support the
guilty finding. Superintendent, Mass. Corr. Inst. v.
Hill, 472 U.S. 445, 455 (1985).
context of a disciplinary hearing, “the relevant
question is whether there is any evidence in the record that
could support the conclusion reached by the disciplinary
board.” Hill, 472 U.S. at 455-56. “In
reviewing a decision for some evidence, courts are not
required to conduct an examination of the entire record,
independently assess witness credibility, or weigh the
evidence, but only determine whether the prison disciplinary
board's decision to revoke good time credits has some
factual basis.” McPherson v. McBride, 188 F.3d
784, 786 (7th Cir. 1999) (quotation marks omitted).
[T]he findings of a prison disciplinary board [need only]
have the support of some evidence in the record. This is a
lenient standard, requiring no more than a modicum of
evidence. Even meager proof will suffice, so long as the
record is not so devoid of evidence that the findings of the
disciplinary board were without support or otherwise
arbitrary. Although some evidence is not much, it still must
point to the accused's guilt. It is not our province to
assess the comparative weight of the evidence underlying the
disciplinary board's decision.
Webb v. Anderson, 224 F.3d 649, 652 (7th Cir. 2000)
(quotation marks, citations, parenthesis, and ellipsis
Henley was found guilty of assault and battery in violation
of IDOC policy B-212. Specifically, IDOC offense B-212 prohibits
inmates from “[c]ommitting a battery/assault upon
another person without a weapon or inflicting bodily
injury.” Indiana Department of Correction, Adult
Disciplinary Process: Appendix I.
Conduct Report, Officer Burke charged Henley as follows:
On April 8, 2017 at approximately 11:47 am offender Henley,
Cornell DOC #207111 assaulted offender Ritz, Adam DOC 121813
while he was lying outside at recreation at ISO. Refer to
ECF 11-1 at 1.
to the administrative hearing, Henley requested witness
statements from two offenders. Neither was particularly
helpful to Henley. Offender Keon Moten provided a statement
in which he stated, “I have nothing to say. Thank
you.” ECF 11-4 at 1. Offender Darius Bratcher provided
a statement in which he stated, “I wasn't present
at the time of the incident.” ECF 11-5 at 1.
hearing officer conducted a review of the requested video and
provided a summary stating there was no camera review at the
facility for “outside recreation” where the
incident occurred. ECF 11-6 at 1. However, she provided a
separate video summary in which she described Henley's
movements before and after the incident:
At approx. 11:38AM offenders leave for recreation.
Approx. 11:39AM offender Henley walks out of East 2 into East
2 Inside REC. He walks into a corner and ...