United States District Court, S.D. Indiana, Terre Haute Division
ROBERT K. DECKER, Petitioner,
J. E. KRUEGER, Respondent.
ENTRY DENYING PETITION FOR WRIT OF HABEAS CORPUS AND
DIRECTING ENTRY OF FINAL JUDGMENT
William T. Lawrence, Senior Judge
7, 2018, petitioner Robert K. Decker filed his petition for
writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241
challenging a disciplinary proceeding that commenced with
Incident Report No. 3035622. The respondent filed a return to
order to show cause, dkt. 7, and then Mr. Decker moved to
amend his petition. Dkt. 8; dkt. 11. The respondent filed an
amended return, dkt. 12, and Mr. Decker replied, dkt. 13.
reasons explained in this Entry, Mr. Decker's amended
habeas petition must be denied.
inmates must be afforded due process before any of their good
time credits-in which they have a liberty interest-can be
revoked.” Jones v. Cross, 637 F.3d 841, 845
(7th Cir. 2011). “In the context of a prison
disciplinary hearing, due process requires that the prisoner
receive (1) written notice of the claimed violation at least
24 hours before hearing; (2) an opportunity to call witnesses
and present documentary evidence (when consistent with
institutional safety) to an impartial decision-maker; and (3)
a written statement by the fact-finder of the evidence relied
on and the reasons for the disciplinary action.”
Id.; see also Superintendent, Mass. Corr. Inst.
v. Hill, 472 U.S. 445, 454 (1985); Wolff v.
McDonnell, 418 U.S. 539, 570-71 (1974). In addition,
“some evidence” must support the guilty finding.
Ellison v. Zatecky, 820 F.3d 271, 274 (7th Cir.
The Disciplinary Proceeding Regarding Incident Report
approximately 12:45 p.m. on September 20, 2017, an officer
was attempting to escort Mr. Decker to his assigned cell at
the United States Penitentiary in Terre Haute, Indiana. Mr.
Decker tried to break free from the officer and was
combative, attempted to kick his legs toward the officer, and
resisted the application of restraints. At approximately 1:25
p.m., Incident Report No. 3035622 was prepared by Senior
Officer B. Monnett, charging Mr. Decker with violations of
Code 224-A, assaulting any person (attempt), and Code 307,
refusing to obey an order. The Incident Report stated:
On September 20, 2017, at 12:45 pm, I attempted to escort
inmate Decker, Robert, Reg. No. 51719-074 out of Holding Cell
MR-5 in the Special Housing, back to his assigned cell in
Range A-Upper, cell #214. Once I entered the cell and grabbed
inmate Decker by the arm, he attempted to break free from me
by pulling away from me. I along with responding staff placed
inmate Decker on the floor to regain control. I gave inmate
Decker multiple orders to stop his actions with negative
result. Inmate Decker continued to resist by not allowing us
to place the leg restraints on him and kicking his legs
toward the staff involved in the Use of Force. Once
restrained, inmate Decker refused to walk on his own and was
carried down the steps to Range A-Lower, cell #116, where he
was placed in Hard 4-Point Restraints by the SHU Lieutenant.
Dkt. 12-4 at 1.
Incident Report was delivered to Mr. Decker and he was
verbally advised of his rights on September 20, 2017, at
approximately 7:45 p.m. Id. The Unit Disciplinary
Committee (“UDC”) referred the charge to the
Disciplinary Hearing Officer (“DHO”) due to the
severity of the charge. Id.
Incident Report process was suspended because the matter was
referred for a criminal investigation. The Incident Report
was released for administrative processing on September 21,
2017. Dkt. 12-4 at 3.
September 27, 2017, Mr. Decker signed the Inmate Rights at
Discipline Hearing form, the Notice of Discipline Hearing
Before the DHO, and a Waiver of Appearance for both UDC and
DHO hearings. Dkt. 12-5 at 4-6.
September 28, 2017, DHO Bradley held a disciplinary hearing.
At the hearing, he found Mr. Decker guilty of violating Code
224-A, assaulting any person (attempt). Mr. Decker was
advised of his rights, was offered a staff representative,
and was also advised he could request witnesses. He, however,
declined a staff representative, declined to request
witnesses, and declined to appear at the UDC and DHO
hearings. Dkt. 12-5 at 2, 6.
DHO's finding was based on the following evidence: the
Incident Report, a staff memorandum from Officer Rogers, and
Mr. Decker's lack of refutation of the charges. Dkt. 12-5
at 2. The DHO issued the report on October 26, 2017, and it
was delivered to Mr. Decker on November 9, 2017. Dkt. 12-5 at
3. The following sanctions were imposed: disallowance of 27