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August 10, 2022: COMPASSIONATE RELEASE and BOP COVID-19 BLOG



Fast Facts (Full BOP stats can be found here)


Confirmed active cases at 116 BOP facilities and 26 RRCs

Currently positive-testing inmates: 445 (down from 463) Currently positive-testing staff: 587 (up from 573) Recovered inmates currently in the BOP: 49,567 (up from 49,525) Recovered staff: 13,462 (up from 13,439)


Institutions with the largest number of currently positive-testing inmates:

Sheridan FCI: 27 (unchanged)

Terminal Island FCI: 23

Greenville FCI: 22

Institutions with the largest number of currently positive-testing staff:

Central Headquarters: 52 (unchanged)

Carswell FMC: 23 (unchanged)

Houston FDC: 21 (unchanged)

System-wide testing results: Presently, BOP has 141,169 federal inmates in BOP-managed institutions and 13,838 in community-based facilities. Today's stats: Completed tests: 128,728 (up from 128,723) Positive tests: 55,376 (up from 55,371)


Total vaccine doses administered: 326,747 (up from 326,685)


Case Note: The difficulty of being a male transitioning to a female in federal prison is not extraordinary and compelling...


In U.S. v. JUSTIN WOLAVER, 2022 WL 3154140 (D.N.M. Aug. 8, 2022) (Herrera, J.), the court held that the difficulty of being a male transitioning to a female in federal prison is not extraordinary and compelling, explaining: "Defendant was sentenced and committed to the Bureau of Prisons (“BOP”) on December 17, 2012 for a term of 180 months. ECF No. 11. According to Defendant, while incarcerated she “discovered [she] was transgender.” ECF No. 19 (letter from Defendant to the Court seeking a reduction in sentence). Over two years ago and while under the care of BOP, Defendant began the process of transitioning from a male to a female. Id. The BOP has made certain accommodations that are consistent with the BOP's Transgender Offender Manual (“Manual”) including granting her access to hormones, including estradiol,2 ECF No. 22-2 at 1, and allowing her to have access to women's undergarments. Id. at 3; see BOP, Transgender Offender Manual, 5200.08 (2022) and Transgender Offender Manual, 5200.04 (2017). Defendant, who now refers to herself as “Ally,” and prefers the pronouns “she/her,” ECF No. 22 at 1, asserts that life as a transgender inmate—particularly as a female in a men's prison—is traumatizing and dangerous. ECF No. 22 at 6-9. Defendant states that she lives each day in fear of sexual and physical assaults and provides citations to sources that affirm the high rates of such assaults on transgender inmates. Id. at 7-8. Defendant asks the Court to rely on the “catch-all” category as found under the comments of the sentencing guidelines to grant her compassionate release. Id. at 4. The Court is not apathetic to Defendant's struggles and fears while serving the remainder of her 180-month sentence as a transgender female in a men's prison. The Court recognizes, however, that the BOP has recently updated the policies and procedures to address the challenges and concerns that a transgender inmate may face.3 Defendant's status, while unusual, is not a solitary case, and the BOP has put forth much consideration to manage this special population of inmates in the most appropriate and safe manner. The guidelines provide for specific protocols that the facilities should follow to include in limited part, giving transgender inmates the opportunity to shower separately from other inmates when individual shower stalls are unavailable, giving serious consideration to a transgender inmate's own views with respect to safety when making housing unit and programming assignments, providing for protocols to transfer an inmate to a different sex facility (if the inmate meets all the criteria and is approved by the Warden), and providing an opportunity for inmates to pursue gender affirming surgery. Manual, 5200.08 (2022). The 2022 Manual is thorough and specific. Therefore, if administrators and staff follow the policies and protocols contained therein (and at this point, the Court has not been presented with evidence that BOP is not following these policies), the threat and danger to transgender inmates should be significantly reduced. It appears that there are avenues that Defendant may pursue under the BOP Manual to make her life in prison safer and more comfortable given her unique needs. Defendant does not assert that she has attempted to pursue any of the remedies as provided therein. Accordingly, under the facts presented here Defendant's status as a transgender female housed in a men's prison is not an extraordinary and compelling circumstance that causes the Court to grant compassionate release.”

Death Watch (Note: The BOP press website announces BOP COVID-related deaths here.) The BOP has announced no new COVID-related inmate deaths. COVID-related inmate deaths remain at 302. Eleven of the inmates died while on home confinement. Staff deaths remain at 7

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