United States District Court, N.D. Texas, Dallas Division
CHRISTOPHER JOHN FOSTER (BOP Register No. 27294-064), Petitioner,
WARDEN BALIS, Respondent.
FINDINGS, CONCLUSIONS, AND RECOMMENDATION OF THE
UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
L. HORAN UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
Christopher John Foster, an inmate at a federal facility in
this district, has filed a pro se habeas petition
under 28 U.S.C. Â§ 2241, requesting modification of âterms of
post-release placement ... to seek an immediate reassignment
to [his] home address.â Dkt. No. 3.
case has been referred to the undersigned United States
magistrate judge for pretrial management under 28 U.S.C.
§ 636(b) and a standing order of reference from Senior
United States District Judge A. Joe Fish.
undersigned enters these findings of fact, conclusions of
law, and recommendation that the Court should dismiss the
Section 2241 petition for lack of jurisdiction.
pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography, in
violation of 18 U.S.C. § 2252A(a)(5)(B), and, in August
2012, he was sentenced to 97 months of imprisonment. See
United States v. Foster, No. 5:11-cr-00380-R (W.D.
Okla.), Dkt. No. 38. More recently, in August 2019, Foster
admitted guilt to five violations of his term of supervision,
his supervised release was vacated, and he was sentenced to 6
months of imprisonment. See id., Dkt. No. 88. The
judgment revoking his supervised release includes, as a
special condition of supervision, that “[t]he defendant
shall reside at a residential re-entry facility (RRC) for up
to 180 days as directed by the U.S. Probation Officer upon
release from the Bureau of Prisons, or any federal, state, or
local correctional facility. The defendant shall report
directly to the RRC upon release from custody and shall
follow all rules and procedures of the facility.”
Id. at 6. And, on October 17, 2019, the sentencing
court denied Foster's request
that he be permitted to return home rather than be assigned
to a halfway house, one of the Special Conditions of
Supervision imposed by the Court when it sentenced Mr. Foster
for violating the terms of his supervised release[, ] ...
finding that the condition reflects the seriousness of
Defendant's underlying offense, the need to deter him
from violating the conditions, which in the recent past has
proven difficult for Mr. Foster, and the need to protect the
public from future crimes.
Id., Dkt. No. 101.
admits that he is now seeking the same relief from this
Court, under the authority of Section 2241. See Dkt.
No. 3 (“This Petition follows a Denial under United
States District Judge, David L. Russell of the Western
District of Oklahoma upon a requested modification order that
was adjudicated on 17 October 2019.”).
Standards and Analysis
courts are authorized, under 28 U.S.C. § 2243, to
dispose of habeas corpus matters ‘as law and justice
require, '” Hilton v. Braunskill, 481 U.S.
770, 775 (1987) - that statute “authorizes a district
court to summarily dismiss a frivolous habeas-corpus petition
prior to any answer or other pleading by the government,
” Gatte v. Upton, No. 4:14-cv-376-Y, 2014 WL
2700656, at *1 (N.D. Tex. June 13, 2014) (footnote omitted).
under the Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases in the United
States District Courts - which “also apply to §
2241 habeas cases, ” Romero v. Cole, No.
1:16-cv-148, 2016 WL 2893709, at *2 & n.4 (W.D. La. Apr.
13, 2016) (collecting authority, including Castillo v.
Pratt, 162 F.Supp.2d 575, 576 (N.D. Tex. 2001)),
rec. accepted, 2016 WL 2844013 (W.D. La. May 12,
2016) - “[i]f it plainly appears from the petition and
any attached exhibits that the petitioner is not entitled to
relief in the district court, the judge must dismiss the
petition, ” Rule 4, Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases
in the United States District Courts.
2241 “is the proper procedural vehicle if a prisoner
‘challenges the execution of his sentence rather than
the validity of his conviction and sentence.'”
Gallegos-Hernandez v. United States, 688 F.3d 190,
194 (5th Cir. 2012) (quoting United States v. Cleto,
956 F.2d 83, 84 (5th Cir. 1992)); see also Robinson v.
United States, 812 F.3d 476, 476 (5th Cir. 2016) (per
curiam) (“Section 2255 provides ‘the primary
means of collaterally attacking a federal sentence.'
Section 2241, on the other hand, is used to challenge
‘the manner in which a sentence is
executed.'” (quoting Tolliver v. Dobre,
211 F.3d 876, 877 (5th Cir. 2000))).
Section 2241 petition challenging supervised-release
conditions “raises errors that occurred at or prior to
sentencing” and thus “should be construed as a
§ 2255 motion.” Robinson, 812 F.3d at 476
(citing Tolliver, 211 F.3d at 877-78); see,
e.g.,Cox v. Warden, Fed. Det. Ctr., 911 F.2d
1111, 1113-14 (5th Cir. 1990) (“Cox alleged that the
sentencing court improperly imposed supervised release,
instead of special parole, and that, even if such were
permissible, the court imposed an excessive term of
supervised release. The district court's dismissal of