United States District Court, S.D. Indiana, Terre Haute Division
ORDER DENYING PETITION FOR A WRIT OF HABEAS CORPUS
PURSUANT TO 28 U.S.C. § 2241 AND DIRECTING ENTRY OF
R. SWEENEY II, JUDGE
Thompson, an inmate at the United States Penitentiary in
Terre Haute, Indiana, seeks a writ of habeas corpus pursuant
to 28 U.S.C. § 2241. For the reasons discussed in this
Order, his petition is denied.
Factual and Procedural Background
March 22, 2012, Mr. Thompson was arrested in Weakley County,
Tennessee on a Texas state warrant for failure to register as
a sex offender and violation of his parole. Dkt. 7-1, at
¶ 4. He was subsequently transported to Texas to answer
these charges. Id., at ¶ 5. He pleaded
guilty to the Texas state crime of failure to register as a
sex offender, and the Texas court sentenced him to a 10-year
term of imprisonment. Id., at ¶ 6. On August
20, 2012, the United States District Court for the Western
District of Tennessee issued a warrant for Mr. Thompson's
arrest for assault on a federal officer and failure to
register as a sex offender. Id., at ¶ 7.
January 16, 2014, Mr. Thompson pleaded guilty to both federal
charges, and the district court sentenced him to a 77-month
term of imprisonment for each count, to be served
concurrently with each other and with his Texas state
sentence. Id., at ¶ 9. Mr. Thompson was then
returned to Texas state custody, where he remained until
March 23, 2018, when his ten-year Texas state sentence was
discharged. Id. At that point, Mr. Thompson was
transferred to federal custody to continue serving his
federal sentences, which had begun to run on the date they
were imposed: January 16, 2014. Id. at ¶¶
February 19, 2019, Mr. Thompson filed a petition for a writ
of habeas corpus arguing that his federal sentence should
have begun to run “on the date in which he was
apprehended”- March 22, 2012. Dkt. 1-2 at 2. He also
asserts that he should receive “additional ‘Good
Time' under the First Step Act of 2018” and
concluded by requesting “immediate release[.]”
Id. 3. The respondent responded to the petition and
Mr. Thompson has not replied. The petition is now ripe for
writ of habeas corpus may be granted where the defendant is
in custody in violation of the Constitution, laws, or
treaties of the United States. 28 U.S.C. § 2241(c)(3).
In support of his habeas petition, Mr. Thompson asserts that
his sentence has been incorrectly calculated and that he is
entitled to good time credit toward his sentence under the
First Step Act of 2018. The respondent has responded, arguing
that Mr. Thompson has failed to exhaust his administrative
remedies on these claims, that his sentence has been properly
calculated, and that Mr. Thompson has failed to raise a claim
under the First Step Act.
Exhaustion of Administrative Remedies
respondent first argues that Mr. Thompson's petition must
be dismissed because he failed to exhaust his administrative
remedies. Although “[t]he exhaustion requirement of the
Prison Litigation Reform Act of 1995 (PLRA), 42 U.S.C. §
1997e(a), does not apply to habeas actions, Walker v.
O'Brien, 216 F.3d 626, 633-37 (7th Cir. 2000),
exhaustion of administrative remedies is still required.
Richmond v. Scibana, 387 F.3d 602, 604 (7th Cir.
2004) (“A common-law exhaustion rule applies to §
2241 actions even though § 1997e(a) does not.”).
respondent contends that Mr. Thompson has “never
submitted any administrative remedy requests” related
to his claims. Dkt. 7 at 1. By failing to file a reply in
support of his habeas petition, Mr. Thompson has not rebutted
this contention. Thus, because he is deemed to have failed to
exhaust his administrative remedies, his petition for a writ
of habeas corpus must be dismissed.
it appears to be in the interests of both justice and
judicial efficiency that the merits of Mr. Thompson's
habeas claims be resolved. In Lambrix v. Singletary,
520 U.S. 518, 524 (1997), “the Supreme Court noted that
its cases have ‘suggest[ed] that the procedural-bar
issue should ordinarily be considered first.'
Nevertheless, added the Court, it did ‘not mean to
suggest that the procedural-bar issue must invariably be
resolved first; only that it ordinarily should
be.'” Brown v. Watters, 599 F.3d 602,
609-10 (7th Cir. 2010) (quoting Lambrix, 520 U.S. at
Calculation of Mr. Thompson's Sentence
Thompson contends that his sentence should have started on
the date he was ...