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Ortegaa v. Halliday

United States District Court, S.D. Illinois

November 21, 2019

ALDO ORTEGA, Plaintiff,
v.
CONNIE HALLIDAY, DAVID RAINS, ROGER MOSS, CRAIG FINDLEY, JOHN BALDWIN, and BRITNI HUDLESTON, Defendants.

          MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

          NANCY J. ROSENSTENGEL CHIEF U.S. DISTRICT JUDGE

         This matter is before the Court on the Motions for Preliminary Injunction (Docs. 19, 87, 101), filed by Plaintiff Aldo Ortega, an inmate of the Illinois Department of Corrections (“IDOC”), as well as the Motion for Summary Judgment filed by Defendants John Baldwin, Connie Halliday, Britni Huddleston, Roger Moss, Craig Findley, and David Rains (Doc. 76).[1] For the reasons set forth below, Ortega's motions are denied, and Defendants' motion for summary judgment is granted.

         Background

         Plaintiff Aldo Ortega was found guilty of reproducing and selling child pornography in Cook County, Illinois, in June 2012 (Doc. 13-1 at pp. 4-5). He was sentenced to four years of incarceration with a Mandatory Supervised Release (MSR) term of three years to life (Id. at pp. 4, 8).[2] On December 13, 2013, Ortega was released from Centralia Correctional Center on MSR (Id.). After serving 19.5 months of his term of supervised release, on August 5, 2015, Ortega allegedly violated the conditions of his MSR (Doc. 13, p. 5; Doc. 13-1, p. 8).

         On August 10, 2015, Ortega was served with a Parole Violation Report, which cited him for violating Condition #15 for possession of alcohol, smart cell phones, a computer, and sexually explicit material by a sex offender (Doc. 13-1, p. 7). It also cited Ortega for violating Condition #16 for failure to comply with sex offender counseling, computer and internet restrictions, and GPS monitoring (Id.). Because these alleged violations occurred at his original host site-his parents' house-the parole agent requested that the site be deemed unsuitable in the future (Doc. 13-1, pp. 8-10).

         The Prisoner Review Board (PRB) held a revocation hearing in September 2015 (Doc. 34-3), at which Ortega could have been sentenced to up to two years of incarceration for violating the terms of his MSR pursuant to 730 Ill. Comp. Stat. § 5/3-3-9(a)(3)(C). Instead, the PRB continued the hearing on Ortega's violation to March 2016 (Id.).

         On March 15, 2016, the PRB reconvened and noted that Ortega had “no suitable host site” to which he could be released (Doc. 34-4). Although Ortega's previous PRB Order stated he had violated Conditions #15 and #16, the March 15, 2016 Order now stated he had violated Condition #5, which requires the parolee to have a suitable host site (Id.). The PRB then continued consideration of Ortega's revocation for another six months (Id.).[3]

         The PRB convened a third revocation hearing on September 7, 2016 (Doc. 13-1, p. 18). At this hearing, the PRB noted that the “violation date of record is 8/5/15, ” and that Ortega would have “Continued release eligibility 2 years after [8/5/15].” (Id.).

         On March 8, 2017, Ortega received a communication from Field Services titled “RESIDENCE PLAN DENIED, ” which informed him that his host site (his parents' house) was denied for having unsuitable or unsafe conditions (Doc. 13-1, p. 22). Ortega filed a grievance related to the denial, requesting that his parents' home be reinstated as an approved host site since it had previously been approved and he had lived there for 19 months (Doc. 13-1 at pp. 29-31).

         In August 2017, two years after his original parole violation, Ortega still had not found a suitable host site at which to reside while on supervised release. Thus, on August 4, 2017, Ortega was issued a Parole Violation Report, indicating he had violated Condition #5 for failing to provide a host site, and an IDOC warrant was issued (Doc. 13-1, pp. 24-25).

         On August 7, 2017, Ortega filed a grievance stating that he had been declared a “violator” as of August 5, 2015, and was ordered re-confined for two years (Doc. 13-1 at pp. 35-36). Under 730 Ill. Comp. Stat. § 5/3-3-9(a)(3)(C), his two-year period of re-confinement expired on August 5, 2017 (Id.). Ortega asked that he be immediately released and his MSR be “revoked.” Under Ortega's apparent understanding of the meaning of the word “revoked, ” he demanded that he be released without any MSR or parole terms still in effect (Id.). He further stated, “I don't want to hear or see that the PRB cannot revoke my parole as it clearly states in the statutes that they can absolutely revoke, and is revoked when they order reconfinement for parole violation(s).” (Id. at p. 36).

         On September 20, 2017, the PRB conducted its revocation hearing for the 2017 host site violation (Doc. 34-5). The PRB's Order noted that Ortega put his parents' address for his host site, but the home was denied as unsatisfactory. It further noted that Ortega's future “[r]elease [will be] effective upon the approval of a viable host site as determined by IDOC.” (Id.). Ortega, therefore, remained in prison for lack of a suitable host site.

         Less than a month later, Ortega initiated this lawsuit. He is now proceeding on his First Amended Complaint (Doc. 13). After a threshold review of the First Amended Complaint (Doc. 18), the Court allowed Ortega to proceed on the following claims:

Count 1: Defendants IDOC Director John Baldwin and PRB chairman Craig Findley, in their official capacities, violated Ortega's right to procedural due process of law under the Fourteenth Amendment when they repeatedly declined to release him on parole for lack of a suitable host site, to the extent Ortega seeks declaratory and injunctive relief.
Count 2: Defendants John Baldwin, Craig Findley, Connie Halliday, Britney Hudleston, David Rains, and Randy Moss violated Ortega's right to substantive due process of law under the Fourteenth Amendment when they repeatedly declined to release him on parole for lack of a suitable host site.
Count 3: Defendants John Baldwin, Craig Findley, Connie Halliday, Britney Hudleston, David Rains, and Randy Moss subjected Ortega to cruel and unusual punishment under the Eighth Amendment by holding him in IDOC custody beyond his term of his incarceration.

         Motions for Preliminary Injunction

         In his Amended Complaint, Ortega also included a request for injunctive relief in the form of an order requiring Defendants: to cease all unauthorized and illegal actions; to conduct a review of all cases of inmates who have been convicted of sex crimes; and to credit their confinement if still ongoing or, if on MSR or parole as stated under 730 Ill. Comp. Stat. § 5/3-3-9, to release them upon completion of the two-year period and consider their obligation to the IDOC and PRB fulfilled (Doc. 13 at p. 19).

         On January 16, 2019, Ortega filed a second motion for preliminary injunction (Doc. 87), and on April 19, 2019, Ortega filed a third motion for preliminary injunction (Doc. 101) that asks for ...


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