United States District Court, S.D. West Virginia, Beckley Division
PROPOSED FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
A. Eifert, United States Magistrate Judge.
17, 2016, Petitioner Cordero Lionell Canada
(“Petitioner”), proceeding pro se, filed
a Petition for a Writ of Habeas Corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
§ 2241. (ECF No. 1). This matter is assigned to the
Honorable Irene C. Berger, United States District Judge, and
by Standing Order has been referred to the undersigned United
States Magistrate Judge for the submission of proposed
findings of fact and recommendations for disposition pursuant
to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(B). Currently pending is
Respondent's request for dismissal of the petition. (ECF
No. 8). Because Petitioner's release from custody renders
his petition moot, the undersigned respectfully
RECOMMENDS that the presiding District Judge
GRANT the Motion to Dismiss;
DISMISS the Petition for a Writ of Habeas
Corpus; and remove this matter from the docket of the Court.
time Petitioner filed this action, he was incarcerated at the
Federal Correctional Institution located in Beckley, West
Virginia, serving a sentence imposed by the United States
District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky. (ECF No.
1 at 1). In his petition seeking habeas relief, Petitioner
complained that his federal sentence was incorrectly
calculated, because it did not provide him with credit for
time he served in federal custody on a writ of habeas
corpus ad prosequendum. (Id. at 8). He asked
that his sentence be recalculated to account for that time.
1, 2016, after receiving Petitioner's filing fee, the
undersigned ordered the Respondent to show cause why the
relief requested should not be granted. (ECF No. 7).
Respondent filed a response to the show cause order on July
29, 2016, arguing that Petitioner was not entitled to credit
for the time he served in federal custody prior to imposition
of his sentence, because that time was credited against a
state sentence. (ECF No. 8). Petitioner filed a memorandum in
opposition of the Government's position, reasserting his
arguments and asking the Court to credit time against his
sentence. (ECF No. 10).
January 10, 2018, Respondent was released from the custody of
the Federal Bureau of Prisons, having served his sentence .
See www.bop.gov/inmateloc/; (ECF No. 8-1 at 2).
Petitioner has left no forwarding address with the Clerk of
Court. Indeed, his last contact with the Court was on
December 7, 2016.
well-settled that a prisoner must be in custody at the time
he brings a petition for a writ of habeas corpus. Leonard
v. Hammond, 804 F.2d 838, 842 (4th Cir. 1986). Although
his subsequent release will not deprive the court of subject
matter jurisdiction, “[t]he question of mootness is
separate and distinct from the jurisdictional issue.”
Id. “To be justiciable under Article III of
the Constitution, a conflict between litigants must present a
‘case or controversy' both at the time the action
is filed and at the time it is decided. If intervening
factual ... events effectively dispel the case or controversy
during pendency of the suit, the federal courts are powerless
to decide the questions presented.” Ross v.
Reed, 719 F.2d. 689, 693-94 (4th Cir. 1983); see
also Arizonans for Official English v. Arizona,
520 U.S. 43, 68 n.22 (1997) (“The requisite personal
interest that must exist at the commencement of the
litigation ... must continue throughout its existence”)
(citations omitted). “Simply stated, a case is moot
when the issues presented are no longer ‘live' or
the parties lack a legally cognizable interest in the
outcome.” Powell v. McCormack, 395
U.S. 486, 496 (1969). Therefore, when a federal prisoner
files a habeas corpus petition seeking relief from a
sentence, his release from custody may render the petition
are two exceptions to the mootness doctrine.
Leonard, 804 F.2d at 842. First, under the
“collateral consequences” exception, a habeas
petition is not rendered moot after a petitioner is released
from custody where the conviction results in collateral
consequences that continue after expiration of the sentence.
Id. (citing Carafas v. LaVallee, 391 U.S.
234 (1968)). For example:
[w]here the criminal conviction ... results in the continued
denial of important civil rights, such as the right-to-vote
or the right to be considered for jury duty, the claim for
habeas relief will remain a live controversy even after the
prisoner has been released from custody. Similarly, where the
criminal conviction may result in an enhanced sentence should
the petitioner later be convicted of another crime, h[is]
stake in habeas relief permits the court to exercise its
judicial freedom long after [ ] he has been freed.
Broughton v. State of N.C., 717 F.2d 147, 148-49
(4th Cir. 1983) (internal citations omitted). Second, the
“capable of repetition, yet evading review”
exception prevents a petition from becoming moot when two
elements are present: (a) the challenged action is too short
in duration to be fully litigated before it ceases or
expires, and (b) there is a reasonable expectation that the
same petitioner will be subjected to the same wrongful action
again. Leonard, 804 F.2d at 842 (citing
Weinstein v. Bradford, 423 U.S. 147, 149 (1975)).
case, neither exception applies. Petitioner did not challenge
his conviction; rather, he claimed only that his sentence was
miscalculated, improperly lengthening his time in custody.
Where the petitioner elects only to challenge the execution
of his sentence and not the validity of the conviction,
collateral consequences are irrelevant. Spencer v.
Kemna, 523 U.S. 1, 7 (1998). Similarly, the capable of
repetition, but evading review exception is inapplicable here
because there is no reasonable expectation that Petitioner
will be incarcerated again and face the same set of
circumstances in the future. Consequently, release from
custody moots the petition. Lane v. Williams, 455
U.S. 624, 631 (1982).
these reasons, the undersigned FINDS that
(1) Petitioner's release from custody renders his
petition for habeas corpus relief moot and (2) neither
exception to the mootness doctrine applies in this