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United States v. Calhoun

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

May 20, 2019

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
v.
MARK J. CALHOUN

          ORDER

          Daniel P. Jordan III CHIEF UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         This closed criminal case is before the Court on Defendant Mark J. Calhoun's Motion [471] seeking an adjustment to his sentence to account for time he spent on home detention between his jury trial and surrender into federal custody. While his submissions to the Court appear to raise several different issues, in his reply, Calhoun clarifies that “[t]he ‘ONLY' issue before the Court is the question of prior custody credit.” Def.'s Reply [475] at 1. For the reasons that follow, Calhoun's motion is denied.

         I. Facts and Procedural History

         On May 21, 2009, Calhoun was charged with 25 counts-including wire fraud and money laundering-related to the procurement of mortgage loans from various lenders. On May 27, 2009, the Court granted Calhoun an unsecured bond of $10, 000.

         Calhoun's trial began on February 22, 2010. Three days later, on February 25, the Court found that Calhoun inappropriately spoke with a juror. It therefore modified the conditions of release and placed Calhoun on home confinement with electronic monitoring. Under the Court's Order, Calhoun was “restricted to [his] residence at all times except for employment; education; religions services; medical, substance abuse, or mental health treatment; attorney visits; court appearances; court-ordered obligations; or other activities pre-approved by the pretrial services office or supervising officer.” Order Setting Conditions of Release [219] ¶ 8(s)(ii).

         On June 8, 2011, the Court sentenced Calhoun to serve 200 months, despite a guideline range of life imprisonment. The Court further ordered him to self-surrender at the designated institution by noon on August 1, 2011. Calhoun remained under the Court's home-detention order until he reported to begin serving his term of incarceration.

         On March 25, 2019-less than 92 months into his 200-month sentence-Calhoun filed the present motion. He asks the Court to modify his imposed term of imprisonment under 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c) to give him credit for the time served on pre-incarceration home detention. Mot. [471]. He alternatively asks the Court to “appoint[] petitioner an attorney to assist in preparing a proper [§] 3582(c)[] Motion.” Id. at 1. Calhoun also submitted a letter [473] in support, and the Court directed the Government to respond. The Government filed its response [474], and Calhoun filed a reply [475].

         II. Analysis

         Calhoun says the Federal Bureau of Prisons (“BOP”) denied his request to credit his approximately 17 months of home confinement “due to their interpretation of the language of the controlling statute.” Mot. [471] at 2. That statute, 18 U.S.C. § 3585(b), states

[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 credited against another sentence.

         As the Government correctly observed, “the district court lacks the authority to award or deny credit” under this statute. In re United States Bureau of Prisons, Dep't of Justice, 918 F.3d 431, 439 (5th Cir. 2019). And the BOP was correct to conclude that Calhoun “was not statutorily eligible for credit for the time he spent in home confinement.” Paul v. Bragg, 454 Fed.Appx. 380, 381 (5th Cir. 2011).

         So to obtain credit for that time, Calhoun asks the Court to modify his sentence, presumably from 200 months down to 183 months.[1] The Court does have such authority under 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c), which provides:

         The court may not modify a term of imprisonment once it has been ...


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