United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
M. Yandle, United States District Judge.
Scott Lewis Rendelman, an inmate of the United States Bureau
of Prisons (“BOP”) currently incarcerated at
Marion U.S. Penitentiary (“Marion”), brings this
habeas corpus action pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241. On
January 31, 2019, Rendelman was found guilty of possessing a
dangerous weapon. (Doc. 1, pp. 10-12). As a result, Rendelman
lost 41 days of good conduct credit. (Id. at p. 12).
He seeks expungement of the disciplinary ticket (Incident
Report No. 3171976) and restoration of his good conduct
credit. (Id. at p. 8).
of the Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases in United States
District Courts provides that upon preliminary consideration
by the district judge, “[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 and direct the clerk to notify the
petitioner.” Rule 1(b) gives this Court the authority
to apply the Rules to other habeas corpus cases.
Report and Disciplinary Hearing
September 20, 2018, Rendelman was charged with possessing a
dangerous weapon (Incident Report No. 3171976). (Doc. 1, p.
10). During the search of Rendelman's cell as part of a
mass shakedown in Rendelman's unit, a sharpened metal
object was located under Rendelman's cell locker.
(Id. at p. 11). That same day at 6:30 p.m.,
Rendelman was provided with a copy of the incident report.
The matter was referred to a disciplinary hearing officer
(“DHO”) for a decision and a hearing was held on
October 24, 2018. (Id.). Rendelman was advised of
his rights prior to and during the hearing. (Id. at
pp. 10-11). He denied the charges and testified that the
weapon was not his but that someone had put the weapon in his
cell. (Id. at p. 10). In his statement to the DHO,
he noted that he did not believe that the weapon was found
inside his bottom locker as alleged in the Incident Report,
but most likely between the bottom and top locker and fell
out when the locker was lifted up during the search.
(Id. at p. 13). He argued that he was not strong
enough to lift the locker in order to hide a weapon. He
waived his right to call witnesses. The DHO found Rendelman
had committed the offense as charged. He was provided a
written copy of the decision. (Id. at pp. 10-12).
reaching its decision, the DHO considered the following
- The statement from Case Manager C. Swift, in the Incident
Report, noted that during a mass shakedown of the unit, Swift
moved Rendelman's cell locker in order to search behind
it. While moving Rendelman's locker, the door of the
bottom locker opened and a metal object approximately 13
inches long and sharpened to a point fell out of the locker.
- The locker was assigned to Rendelman, located in
Rendelman's cell, and included clothing belonging to
Rendleman. Rendleman had been housed in the cell since
December 12, 2017.
- Photographs of the weapon confirmed C. Swift's
statement that the item found was a homemade weapon.
- The DHO considered Rendleman's written statement that
the weapon was left behind by a previous inmate or planted.
The DHO was not convinced of Rendleman's statement as the
TRUSCOPE logs noted his cell was searched six times after
June 2018 and the weapon was not located. The DHO noted that
if the weapon had been left behind by a former occupant of
the cell the weapon would have been located during an earlier
- The DHO noted that Rendleman failed to provide any specific
evidence to demonstrate that someone else planted the weapon.
- As the sole occupant of the cell, the DHO found it was
Rendleman's duty and responsibility to keep his cell free
of all contraband.
found that the staff member's statements regarding the
discovery of the weapon were more credible than
Rendleman's statements that someone else had planted the
weapon, and that Rendleman failed to present evidence which