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Santiago v. Veach

March 31, 2006

JIMMY SANTIAGO, PETITIONER,
v.
RICK VEACH, WARDEN, RESPONDENT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Joe Billy McDADE United States District Judge

ORDER

Before the Court is Jimmy Santiago's Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241 By a Person in Federal Custody [Doc. #1]; Motion for Leave to Conduct Discovery and Request for Production [Doc. #5]; and Motion for Stay of Transfer [Doc. #14]. For the reasons that follow, Santiago's Habeas Petition and Motions are all DENIED.

I. BACKGROUND

Santiago is a federal prisoner currently serving time at the Federal Correctional Institution ("FCI") Pekin, Illinois, for conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute more than 50 grams of cocaine base. On July 15, 1994, he was sentenced to 360 months of imprisonment and his projected good conduct release date is February 15, 2020.

The following facts are undisputed. On January 18, 2004, Officer Sims conducted a search of Santiago's cell at FCI Pekin, Illinois, and found illustrations on how to make a book bomb located in his locker. As a result, Santiago was charged with violating Bureau of Prisons ("BOP") Code 305 for "possession of anything not authorized." 28 C.F.R. § 541.13, Table 3. Santiago received a copy of the incident report the following day.

On January 22, 2004, the incident report was suspended because the incident was referred to the FBI for possible prosecution. Following an investigation, the FBI decided not to pursue the matter. On February 19, 2004, the incident report was referred back to FCI Pekin, Illinois officials and released for administrative processing.

On the following day, the Unit Disciplinary Committee (UDC) conducted a hearing. At the hearing, Santiago openly admitted to drawing the sketches discovered in his locker and stated:

I found a catalog in the trash and drew the pictures from it. I also wrote book numbers from the catalog because I was curious. The Lt. has the catalog now. I don't know why I did it.

Based on the severity of the charge, the incident report and supporting documentation, the UDC referred the matter to the Discipline Hearing Officer ("DHO") and recommended the charge be increased to "possession, manufacture, or introduction of a gun, firearm, weapon, sharpened instrument, knife, dangerous chemical, explosive or any ammunition" in violation of BOP Code 104A. 28 C.F.R. § 541.13, Table 3.*fn1 The UDC also recommended sanctions in the form of disciplinary segregation and loss of good-time credits.

On February 25, 2004, the DHO held a hearing. Santiago was advised of his rights before the DHO, waived his right to a staff representative, and requested no witnesses. At the hearing, Santiago admitted to drawing the diagrams and explained that he had copied them from a catalog found in his living unit. He furthered denied attempting to possess or manufacture an explosive device.

Following the hearing, the DHO found Santiago guilty of "attempted possession or manufacture of an explosive device" in violation of BOP Code 104A. The DHO specifically relied on the reporting officer's statement, the actual diagram depicting the book bomb, a listing of book titles regarding explosives, the catalog, and Santiago's admissions. As a result, Santiago was sanctioned with 60 days in disciplinary segregation and the loss of 40 days of good-time credit. Santiago then proceeded to exhaust his administrative appeals with no success.

On June 13, 2005, Santiago filed the instant Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241 By a Person in Federal Custody [Doc. #1]. In his Habeas Petition, Santiago alleges that the revocation of his good-time credits violated both his procedural and substantive due process rights. In particular, he claims his procedural due process rights were violated because there was insufficient evidence for the DHO to find him guilty of the alleged charge. On the other hand, he claims his substantive due process rights were violated because he should have been charged with a lower category of offense level and the application of BOP Code 104A to him was arbitrary and capricious. As relief, Santiago requests this Court set aside the DHO's finding of guilt as unconstitutional, restore the 40 days of good-time credits, and provide him with any other fair, just, and equitable relief available.

On July 8, 2005, Santiago also filed the instant Motion for Leave to Conduct Discovery and Request for Production [Doc. #5]. In his Motion, Santiago seeks discovery and production of: (1) copies of pages from National Loompanics Catalog ("Catalog") depicting a diagram of a book bomb; and (2) handwritten sketches depicting a diagram of a book bomb, along with book numbers of other publications listed in the Catalog that deal with explosives.

Finally, on March 13, 2006, Santiago filed the instant Motion for Stay of Transfer [Doc. #14]. He requests that this Court issue an order directing Respondent to cease any possible transfer ...


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