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Coleman v. Kallis

United States District Court, N.D. West Virginia

June 5, 2018

S. KALLIS, Warden, Respondent.



         I. Procedural Background

         On June 9, 2017, the pro se Petitioner, Harold Coleman, filed a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus (“Petition”) pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241. ECF No. 1. On August 11, 2017, following a preliminary review, which determined that summary dismissal was not appropriate, the Respondent was ordered to show cause why the Petition should not be granted. ECF No. 9. On September 15, 2017, the Respondent filed a Motion to Dismiss or Alternatively for Summary Judgment, together with a supporting memorandum of law. ECF Nos. 14 & 15. On September 18, 2017, a Roseboro notice was issued .ECF No. 16. The Petitioner has not filed any response.

         II. The Petition

         The Petitioner brings the instant petition challenging the Federal Bureau of Prisons' (“BOP”) computation of his federal sentence. Specifically, he argues that the United States Marshals Service (“USMS”) failed to return him to state custody pursuant to a writ of habeas corpus ad prosequendum, and the BOP failed to designate a Virginia state facility for concurrent service of his federal and state sentences. For relief, he requests that the Court either (1) order the USMS to return him to the state of Virginia on his writ of habeas corpus ad prosequendum, or (2) order the BOP to designate him to the appropriate state correctional facility via nunc pro tunc designation.

         III. The Respondent's Motion

         In response, the Respondent acknowledges that the USMS should have returned Petitioner to state custody pursuant to the writ of habeas corpus ad prosequendum after his federal sentencing. However, Respondent notes that upon notification of this error, the Virginia Department of Corrections (“VADOC”) gave Petitioner credit towards the satisfaction of his state sentences, removed his detainer, and released him to federal custody. In addition, Respondent maintains that Petitioner has received all prior custody credit to which he is entitled. Therefore, Respondent alleges that this Petition should be dismissed as moot.

         IV. Standard of Review

         A. Motion to Dismiss

         “A motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(6) tests the sufficiency of a complaint; importantly, it does not resolve contests surrounding facts, the merits of a claim, or the applicability of defenses.” Republican Party of N.C. v. Martin, 980 F.2d 943, 952 (4th Cir. 1992) (citing 5A Charles Alan Wright & Arthur R. Miller, Federal Practice and Procedure § 1356 (1990)). In considering a motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim, a plaintiff's well-pleaded allegations are taken as true and the complaint is viewed in the light most favorable to the plaintiff. Mylan Labs, Inc. v. Matkari, 7 F.3d 1130, 1134 (4th Cir. 1993); see also Martin, 980 F.2d at 952.

         The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure require “only ‘a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief,' in order to ‘give the defendant fair notice of what the . . . claim is and the grounds upon which it rests.'” Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007) (quoting Conley v. Gibson, 355 U.S. 41, 47 (1957)). Courts long have cited the “rule that a complaint should not be dismissed for failure to state a claim unless it appears beyond doubt that the plaintiff can prove no set of facts in support of [a] claim which would entitle him to relief.” Conley, 355 U.S. at 45-46. In Twombly, the United States Supreme Court noted that a complaint need not assert “detailed factual allegations, ” but must contain more than “labels and conclusions” or “a formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action.” Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555 (citations omitted). Thus, the “[f]actual allegations must be enough to raise a right to relief above the speculative level, ” id. (citations omitted), to one that is “plausible on its face, ” id. at 570, rather than merely “conceivable.” Id. Therefore, in order for a complaint to survive dismissal for failure to state a claim, the plaintiff must “allege facts sufficient to state all the elements of [his or] her claim.” Bass v. E.I.DuPont de Nemours & Co., 324 F.3d 761, 765 (4th Cir. 2003) (citing Dickson v. Microsoft Corp., 309 F.3d 193, 213 (4th Cir. 2002); Iodice v. United States, 289 F.3d 279, 281 (4th Cir. 2002)). In so doing, the complaint must meet a “plausibility” standard, instituted by the Supreme Court in Ashcroft v. Iqbal, where it held that “a claim has facial plausibility when the plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009). Thus, a well-pleaded complaint must offer more than “a sheer possibility that a defendant has acted unlawfully” in order to meet the plausibility standard and survive dismissal for failure to state a claim. Id.

         B. Motion for Summary Judgment

         The Supreme Court has recognized the appropriateness of summary judgment motions pursuant to Rule 56 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure in habeas cases. See Blackledge v. Allison, 431 U.S. 63, 80 (1977); see also Maynard v. Dixon, 943 F.2d 407 (4th Cir. 1991). Summary judgment is appropriate “if the movant shows that there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a); United States v. Lee, 943 F.2d 366, 368 (4th Cir. 1991).

         Motions for summary judgment impose a difficult standard on the moving party because it must be obvious that no rational trier of fact could find for the nonmoving party. Miller v. FDIC, 906 F.2d 972, 974 (4th Cir. 1990). However, the “mere existence of a scintilla of evidence” favoring the nonmoving party will not prevent the entry of summary judgment. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242 (1986). Any permissible inferences to be drawn from the underlying facts must be viewed in the light most favorable to the party opposing the motion. Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co. v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 587-88 (1986). Where, however, the ...

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