United States District Court, N.D. Ohio, Eastern Division
HONORABLE SARA LIOI UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
the Court is pro se defendant Janice Parks'
(“defendant”) “motion for judicial
recommendation regarding 9-12 months of RRC placement”
(Doc. No. 53 [“Mot.”]). The government filed a
response in opposition to the motion (Doc. No. 54
[“Resp.”]). For the reasons set forth herein,
defendant's motion is DENIED WITHOUT
11, 2017, defendant pleaded guilty to a one-count indictment
charging defendant with Conspiracy to Defraud the Government
with Respect to Claims, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 286.
(Doc. No. 45 [“Judgment”] at 282.) The Court
sentenced defendant to 41 months of imprisonment on October
18, 2017, and she began her sentence on December 15, 2017.
(Judgment at 282-83; Resp. at 348.)
filed a motion on May 11, 2018 requesting a recommendation to
the Bureau of Prisons (“BOP”) that she be placed
in a residential re-entry center (“RRC”) for 9 to
12 months at the end of her sentence under the Second Chance
Act. (Mot. at 343.) In her motion, defendant states that her
current projected release date from prison, taking into
consideration the accumulation of good time credit, is August
2020. (Id. at 345.)
argues that RRC placement for a full 9 to 12 months at the
end of her prison term is necessary “to have the
greatest likelihood of successful reintegration into the
community.” (Id. at 344.) She also asserts
that her motion is timely because she is currently due to be
released in August 2020. (Id.) The government
counters that (1) defendant's request for a
recommendation from the Court is premature, and (2) the BOP
is in a better position to determine defendant's
suitability for placement in an RRC. (Resp. at 348-49.) This
Court agrees with the government as to both arguments.
Second Chance Act, Pub.L. No. 110-199, § 251(a), 122
Stat. 657 (2008), amended 18 U.S.C. § 3642(c) to provide
that the BOP shall “ensure that a prisoner serving a
term of imprisonment spends a portion of the final months of
that term (not to exceed twelve months) under conditions that
will afford that prisoner a reasonable opportunity to adjust
to and prepare for the reentry of that prisoner into the
community.” 18 U.S.C. § 3642(c)(1). The BOP
determines penal facility placement based on several factors,
including statements made by the sentencing court. United
States v. George, No. 14-20119, 2018 WL 2148179, at *2
(E.D. Mich. May 10, 2018) (citing 18 U.S.C. § 3621(b)).
While a court may make non-binding recommendations for RRC
placement, the BOP has the exclusive authority to determine
if an inmate should be placed in an RRC and, if so, for how
long. 18 U.S.C. § 3621(b); Martin v. United
States, No. 05-17, 2008 WL 3546433, at *1-2 (W.D. Pa.
Aug. 12, 2008).
court recommends a defendant for RRC placement, there is
usually a substantial record of the defendant's conduct
in prison upon which a well-informed recommendation may be
based. See, e.g., United States v. Ahmed,
No. 1:07CR00647, 2017 WL 5166427, at *1 (N.D. Ohio Nov. 8,
2017) (granting defendant's motion for a recommendation
to an RRC based upon his good conduct over the course of
several years in prison). As the government notes,
“there has not been enough time to accurately evaluate
[defendant's] conduct” in the five short months she
has been imprisoned. (Resp. at 348.) Additionally, the BOP
itself does not evaluate an inmate for RRC placement until 17
to 19 months before his or her projected release date.
See Miller v. Whitehead, 527 F.3d 752, 756 (8th Cir.
2008). At this time, defendant has more than two years of her
sentence left to complete. (Mot. at 345.)
the BOP is in the best position to determine if an inmate is
suitable for placement in a half-way house or an RRC.
Martin v. United States, No. 05-17, 2008 WL 3546433,
at *2 (W.D. Pa. Aug. 12, 2008). Thus, there is no compelling
reason for a Court to recommend an inmate to an RRC prior to
the BOP's own review period of 17-19 months before
release. See Brown v. Shartle, No. 4:10CV1000, 2010
WL 2697052, at *2 (N.D. Ohio July 6, 2010) (holding that the
court could not order the BOP to consider defendant for RRC
placement because defendant invoked the Second Chance Act
before the 17 to 19 month period); see also Kennard v.
Holland, No. 12-CV-200-KKC, 2013 WL 492365, at *2 (E.D.
Ky. Feb. 8, 2013) (noting that the BOP cannot properly
evaluate an inmate for RRC placement until 17 to 19 months
prior to the end of his or her sentence). Defendant has made
her request too early in her sentence for this Court to
consider the appropriateness of a recommendation.
reasons set forth herein, defendant's motion for a
judicial recommendation of RRC placement is DENIED