United States District Court, S.D. Indiana, Indianapolis Division
ORDER DENYING PETITION FOR WRIT OF HABEAS CORPUS,
GRANTING MOTIONS REQUESTING STATUS OF CASE, AND DIRECTING
ENTRY OF FINAL JUDGMENT
EVANS BARKER, JUDGE
petition of Jesse Oram for a writ of habeas corpus challenges
a prison disciplinary proceeding identified as No. ISR
18-01-0128. For the reasons explained in this Order, Mr.
Oram's habeas petition must be DENIED.
in Indiana custody may not be deprived of good-time credits
or of credit-earning class without due process. Ellison
v. Zatecky, 820 F.3d 271, 274 (7th Cir. 2016);
Scruggs v. Jordan, 485 F.3d 934, 939 (7th Cir.
2007); see also Rhoiney v. Neal, 723 Fed.Appx. 347,
348 (7th Cir. 2018). The due process requirement is satisfied
with: 1) the issuance of at least 24 hours advance written
notice of the charge; 2) a limited opportunity to call
witnesses and present evidence to an impartial
decision-maker; 3) a written statement articulating the
reasons for the disciplinary action and the evidence
justifying it; and 4) “some evidence in the
record” to support the finding of guilt.
Superintendent, Mass. Corr. Inst. v. Hill, 472 U.S.
445, 454 (1985); see also Wolff v. McDonnell, 418
U.S. 539, 563-67 (1974).
The Disciplinary Proceeding
December 6, 2017, Investigator Houchins wrote a Conduct
Report charging Mr. Oram with A-114, sexual act with a
visitor. Dkt. 8-1. The Conduct Report states:
On 12/6/2017 at approximately 9:30 am, Offender Oram, Jesse
DOC 129165 placed his penis on the top of the hand of a
volunteer while they were “praying.” This
incident took place at the cell of offender Oram. Offender
Oram admitted to committing this assault during an interview
with myself, C. Houchins, Lead Investigator. Oram reported he
committed this act due to being sexually aroused. Offender
Oram admitted to removing his own penis (exposed skin) from
his clothing and touching the top of this volunteer's
hand (exposed skin).
Oram was notified of the charge on February 14, 2018, when he
received the Screening Report. Dkt. 8-2. He pleaded not
guilty to the charge and requested a lay advocate.
Id. He did not request any witnesses but requested
the video from the 2F range from 9:30 am on December 6, 2017.
Id. His request for video was denied because no
video was available. Id.
prison disciplinary hearing was held on February 22, 2018.
Dkt. 8-4. According to the notes from the hearing, Mr. Oram
stated, “I didn't do it.” Id. Based
on the staff reports, the hearing officer found Mr. Oram
guilty of A-114, sexual act with a visitor. Id. The
sanctions imposed included 365 days of earned credit time
deprivation and a credit class demotion. Id.
Oram appealed to the Facility Head and the Indiana Department
of Correction (IDOC) Final Reviewing Authority, both of which
were denied. Dkt. 8-8; dkt. 8-9. He then brought this
petition for a writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
Oram's habeas petition challenges his prison disciplinary
conviction on four grounds: (1) he was denied a lay advocate;
(2) Investigator Houchins had a conflict of interest; (3) the
denial of video evidence; and (4) sufficiency of the
evidence. See dkt. 1 at 3-6. The respondent argues
that Mr. Oram failed to exhaust his administrative remedies
as to the sufficiency of the evidence. Dkt. 8 at 7. The
respondent further argues that there was no due process
violation, and the hearing officer's finding of guilt was
supported by “some evidence.” Dkt. 8. Mr. Oram