United States District Court, N.D. Texas, Fort Worth Division
CHARLES B. BRADFORD, Petitioner,
ERIC D. WILSON, Warden, FMC-Fort Worth, Respondent.
OPINION AND ORDER
O' CONNOR UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
the Court is a petition for a writ of habeas corpus pursuant
to 28 U.S.C. § 2241 filed by Petitioner, Charles B.
Bradford, a federal prisoner confined at FMC-Fort Worth,
against Eric D. Wilson, warden of FMC-Fort Worth, Respondent.
After having considered the pleadings and relief sought by
Petitioner, the Court has concluded that the petition should
be dismissed as premature. No. service has issued upon
is serving a 36-month term of imprisonment following
revocation of his supervised release for his 2011 conviction
in the United States District Court for the Western District
of Louisiana, No. 5:10-CR-00353-01, for bank fraud. Pet. 2,
ECF No. 1; Js., United States v. Bradford, Criminal Docket
for Case #: 5:10-cr-00353-01, ECF Nos. 123 & 223. The
Bureau of Prisons (BOP) has calculated his projected release
date as August 16, 2019, via good conduct time. See
U.S. Dep't of Justice, Fed. Bur. of Prisons/Inmate
Locator, http://www.bop.gov. (last visited May 17,
2019). In this petition, Petitioner claims that the BOP
should implement the new provisions of the First Step Act of
2018 regarding the award of good conduct time immediately and
recalculate his release date. Pet. 7, ECF No. 5.
district court must dismiss a habeas petition “[i]f it
plainly appears from the petition and any attached exhibits
that the petitioner is not entitled to relief . . . .”
Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases 1(b), 4. From the face of
the petition, it is clear that Petitioner is not entitled to
102(b)(1) of the First Step Act of 2018, Public Law No.
115-391, amended 18 U.S.C. § 3624(b) to permit federal
inmates to earn 54 days of good conduct time for each year of
the prisoner's sentence imposed by the convicting court,
rather than for each year of the sentence served, effectively
abrogating Barber v. Thomas, 560 U.S. 474, 476
(2010) (upholding the BOP's method of awarding good time
credit at the end of each year the prisoner served).
See Public Law 115-391, 132 Stat. 5194, §
102(b)(1); Christopher v. Wilson, No. 4:19-CV-214-O,
2019 WL 1745968, at *1 (N.D. Tex. Apr. 18, 2019); Johnson
v. Bur. of Prisons, No. 4:19-CV-224-O, 2019 WL 1569360,
at *1 (N.D. Tex. Apr. 11, 2019). However, the relevant
provisions of the new law have not yet taken effect and will
not take effect until the attorney general completes the
“risk and needs assessment system” under
§§ 101(a) and 102(b)(2) of the Act. See
Christopher, 2019 WL 1745968, at *1; Johnson,
2019 WL 1569360, at *1. The Act gives the attorney general up
to 210 days from the December 21, 2018, enactment date to
complete the task. Therefore, § 102(b)(1) will not take
effect until approximately mid-July 2019. See
Christopher, 2019 WL 1745968, at *1; Johnson,
2019 WL 1569360, at *1.
urges that if the BOP waits until the attorney general
completes the “risk and needs assessment system”
and recalculates everyone's sentence, he will be unable
to receive any benefit because he will have already been
released. Pet. 2, ECF No. 1. Although the Court is not
unsympathetic to Petitioner's situation, the BOP does not
have the authority to recalculate his good conduct time until
the relevant provisions of the Act take effect. Consequently,
the question of whether he is entitled to recalculation of
his good-conduct time credit is premature, and this Court is
powerless to alter that fact. See Christopher, 2019
WL 1745968, at *2; Johnson, 2019 WL 1569360, at
*2. Accord Greene v. Underwood, No. 4:19-CV-160-Y,
2019 WL 1531673, at *2 (N.D. Tex. Apr. 9, 2019) (Means, J.),
appeal docketed, No. 19-10474 (5th Cir. Apr. 25,
2019); Order, Brown v. Upton, No. 4:19-CV-165-A (N.D. Tex.
March 6, 2019) (McBryde, J.), ECF No. 8; Molina v.
Underwood, No. 3:19-CV-641-K-BN, 2019 WL 1533444, at *2
(N.D. Tex. Mar. 19, 2019); Horton v. Warden, Fed. Med.
Ctr., No. 9:19-CV-42, 2019 WL 2094442, at *2 (E.D. Tex.
Apr. 5, 2019). There is no ambiguity in the Act, and the
Court has no authority to rewrite or disregard the statute in
order to accommodate Petitioner's situation.
reasons discussed, the Court DISMISSES Petitioner's
petition for a writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
§ 2241 without prejudice as premature.
The Court does not address
Petitioner's except to point out that a prisoner must
properly exhaust his claims before raising them in a §
2241 habeas petition. See Day v. Seanez, 24 F.3d
238, 1994 WL 243116, at *1 (5th Cir. 1994). The BOP has an
established grievance process, the Administrative Remedy
Program, for review of any aspect of a prisoner's
confinement, including the calculation of good conduct time.
Thus, although exhaustion of claims in a § 2241 petition
is not statutorily required, federal courts apply the