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Valdez v. Mosley

United States District Court, S.D. Mississippi, Northern Division

August 20, 2018

NORTHERN DIVI FRANCISCO BELTRAN VALDEZ PETITIONER
v.
WARDEN B. MOSELY RESPONDENT

          PROPOSED FINDINGS OF FACT AND RECOMMENDATION

          ROBERT H. WALKER UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         Before the Court is Francisco Beltran Valdez's (Petitioner) pro se 28 U.S.C. § 2241 petition for writ of habeas corpus. Doc. [1]. Petitioner challenges the calculation of his federal sentence. He argues that he should receive credit for time spent in state custody prior to his federal conviction. In the alternative, Petitioner asserts that the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) should nunc pro tunc designate the state prison as the place of incarceration for calculation of his federal sentence. Respondent counters that Petitioner is not entitled to credit because his time spent in state custody was credited towards his state sentence and because he fails to meet the requirements of a nunc pro tunc designation. Doc. [13].

         Beginning December 31, 2009, Petitioner was in state custody following his arrest for possession of a controlled substance. Doc. [12-5] at 2. Petitioner remained in continuous custody since the date of his arrest. Id. On March 18, 2010, a state court sentenced Petitioner to 270 days in state custody. Doc. [12-1] at 2. He completed the state sentence on May 15, 2010. Doc. [12-1] at 2; Doc. [12-2] at 3. The time he served in state custody was credited towards his state sentence. Doc. [12-5] at 3. At the conclusion of the state sentence, Petitioner was turned over to federal authorities on federal immigration charges. Id. at 2. Eventually, the United States District Court for Southern District of California found Petitioner guilty of illegally re-entering the United States after being previously deported. Doc. [12-3] at 2. On July 23, 2012, the federal district court sentenced Petitioner to an 84-month prison term. [12-2] at 2; Doc. [12-3]. Petitioner was committed to the custody of the BOP on September 12, 2012. Doc. [12-2] at 2. The BOP computed his sentence and granted him 799 days of prior federal custody credit beginning May 16, 2010 and ending July 22, 2012. Doc. [12-4] at 4.

         At the time he filed the instant petition, Petitioner was incarcerated at the Federal Correctional Complex in Yazoo City, Mississippi. Doc. [1] at 1. After exhausting administrative remedies, Petitioner filed his § 2241 petition on April 4, 2016. Doc. [5] at 1. The record reveals that he was scheduled to be released from federal custody on July 13, 2016. Doc. [12-4] at 2.

         LAW AND ANALYSIS

         Based on the undersigned's review of the record, Petitioner is presumably no longer in federal custody. His projected release date was July 13, 2016, with a three-year term of supervised release to follow. See Doc. [12-2] at 2; Doc. [12-4] at 2. The Court is unable to provide him the relief he seeks, i.e. an earlier release date based on credit for time served in state custody, because he has completed his term of imprisonment and been released from federal custody. Thus, as an initial matter, the undersigned concludes that the petition should be dismissed as moot. See Spencer v. Kemna, 523 U.S. 1, 7 (1998) (holding that “once the sentence has expired, some concrete and continuing injury other than the now-ended incarceration...must exist if the suit is to be maintained.”) (emphasis added); Bailey v. Southerland, 821 F.2d 277, 278 (5th Cir. 1987); Sinclair v. Blackburn, 599 F.2d 673, 675 (5th Cir. 1979) (holding that unless petitioner continues to suffer “collateral consequences, ” the release from custody renders the petition moot). Compare Johnson v. Pettiford, 442 F.3d 917, 918 (5th Cir. 2006) (holding that possibility of reduction in term of supervised release kept petition from being moot). In the alternative, the undersigned finds that the petition fails on the merits.

         I. Credit for Time Served

         Petitioner asserts that he is entitled to credit for time served because his time in state custody was not previously credited, and his time in federal custody “ran concurrent” with his state sentence. Doc. [5] at 2. The undersigned concludes, however, that Petitioner cannot receive credit towards his federal sentence because his time in state custody was already credited towards the state sentence.

         The commencement date of a federal sentence is determined by operation of 18 U.S.C. § 3585(a), which provides that:

(a) Commencement of Sentence. -- A sentence to a term of imprisonment commences on the date the defendant is received into custody awaiting transportation to...the official detention facility at which the sentence is to be served.

         Further, 18 U.S.C. § 3585(b) governs the application of prior custody credit towards a federal sentence and provides that:

(b) Credit for prior custody. -- A defendant shall be given credit toward the service of a term of imprisonment for any time he has spent in official detention prior to the date the sentence commences --
(1) as a result of the offense for which the sentence was imposed; or
(2) as a result of any other charge for which the defendant was arrested after the commission of the offense for which the sentence was imposed; that has not been ...

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