United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
CHRISTOPHER W. ODEN, #07960-087, Petitioner,
WILLIAM TRUE, BYRAM, CLARK, and DAVID, Respondents.
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
M. YANDLE, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Christopher Oden, an inmate in the custody of the Federal
Bureau of Prisons (“BOP”) who is incarcerated at
the United States Penitentiary in Marion, Illinois
(“USP-Marion”), brings this habeas corpus action
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241. (Doc. 1, pp. 1-13). Oden
seeks immediate placement in a residential reentry center
(“RRC”) near his home for the remainder of his
sentence. (Id.). Instead of the six months he
requested, Oden was approved for six weeks of RRC placement
more than 300 miles from his home. (Id.). He alleges
the BOP denied his placement request without considering the
factors set forth under 18 U.S.C. § 3621(b)(1) through
(5) and in violation of the First Step Act of 2018
(“FSA”). Because his sentence is set to expire in
May 2020, Oden asks that his § 2241 Petition be
expedited. (Doc. 4).
matter is now before the Court for preliminary review of the
Section 2241 Petition. Rule 4 of the Federal 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.
challenging the execution of his sentence and is
“seeking what can fairly be described as a quantum
change in the level of custody.” Graham v.
Broglin, 922 F.2d 379, 381 (7th Cir. 1991);
Atehortua v. Kindt, 951 F.2d 126, 129 (7th Cir.
1991). He has properly brought this claim under 28 U.S.C.
§ 2241 in the district of his confinement. Taylor v.
Lariva, 638 Fed.Appx. 539, 541 (7th Cir. 2016);
Valona v. United States, 138 F.3d 693, 694 (7th Cir.
1998). Oden asserts that he exhausted his remedies through
the BOP before filing the § 2241 Petition. The Court
therefore finds that his claim is cognizable under §
2241 and warrants further consideration.
Oden has named several respondents who must be dismissed at
this juncture, including Manager Byram, Case Manager Clark,
and Counselor Davis. That is because in a habeas corpus
proceeding, the proper respondent is the prisoner's
custodian; the warden of the prison where the inmate is
confined. See 28 U.S.C. § 2242 (an application
for a writ of habeas corpus shall name the person
who has custody over the applicant). See also Rumsfeld v.
Padilla, 542 U.S. 426, 442, 447 (2004); Kholyavskiy
v. Achim, 443 F.3d 946, 948-49 (7th Cir. 2006);
Hogan v. Hanks, 97 F.3d 189, 190 (7th Cir. 1996).
William True is the Warden of USP-Marion, and Oden properly
named him as a respondent in the § 2241 Petition.
Accordingly, the Clerk will be directed to terminate all
other respondents, including Manager Byram, Case Manager
Clark, and Counselor Davis as respondents.
commenting on the merits, the Court concludes that Oden's
§ 2241 Petition survives preliminary review under Rule 4
and Rule 1(b) of the Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases in
United States District Courts. Given Oden's claim
that he is entitled to immediate placement in a residential
reentry facility, an expedited response period will be
IS HEREBY ORDERED that Respondent True shall answer
the Petition or otherwise plead within 14
days of the date this Order is entered (on
or before October 29, 2019). This preliminary Order to
respond does not, of course, preclude the Government from
raising any objection or defense it may wish to present.
Service upon the United States Attorney for the Southern
District of Illinois, 750 Missouri Avenue, East St. Louis,
Illinois, shall constitute sufficient service.
Clerk is DIRECTED to
TERMINATE the following individuals as
respondents: BYRAM, CLARK,
and DAVIS. In any future documents filed in
this case, Respondent WILLIAM TRUE shall be
listed as the only Respondent.
extent Oden seeks an expedited response in Doc. 4, his Motion
is GRANTED; all other portions of this
Motion are DENIED without prejudice.
IS FURTHER ORDERED that this entire matter shall be
REFERRED to a United States Magistrate Judge
for disposition, as contemplated by Administrative Order No.
132, Local Rule 72.2(b)(3), and 28 U.S.C. § 636(c),
should all the parties consent to such a referral.
IS SO ORDERED.