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August 4, 2022: COMPASSIONATE RELEASE and BOP COVID-19 BLOG

Updated: 3 days ago



Fast Facts (Full BOP stats can be found here)


Confirmed active cases at 116 BOP facilities and 15 RRCs

Currently positive-testing inmates: 449 (up from 402) Currently positive-testing staff: 556 (up from 549) Recovered inmates currently in the BOP: 49,582 (down from 49,698) Recovered staff: 13,382 (up from 13,375)


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

Schuylkill FCI: 32 (up from 31)

Florence High USP: 27 (up from 25)

Sheridan FCI: 26 (unchanged)

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

Central Headquarters: 53 (unchanged)

Carswell FMC: 23 (unchanged)

Houston FDC: 20 (unchanged)

System-wide testing results: Presently, BOP has 140,793 federal inmates in BOP-managed institutions and 13,872 in community-based facilities. Today's stats: Completed tests: 128,721 (up from 128,716) Positive tests: 55,369 (up from 55,364)


Total vaccine doses administered: 326,000 (up from 325,969)


Case Note: 32-year disparity caused by non-retroactivity of changes to 924c stacking, combined with other factors, justified compassionate release, defendant's many infractions notwithstanding...


In RODERICK ALLEN COTTON, JR., Petitioner, v. UNITED STATES, Respondent., No. 2:08-CR-87, 2022 WL 3050007 (E.D. Va. Aug. 2, 2022) (Jackson, J.), the court found that 32-year disparity caused by non-retroactivity of changes to 924c stacking, combined with age at the time of the offense, is extraordinary and compelling, and, despite many infractions, inmate's current support systems, not existent at the time of sentencing, tilt the § 3553(a) scale in favor of reduction, explaining: "Today, without sentence stacking, Petitioner would be sentenced under § 924(c) to a mandatory minimum consecutive sentence of 168 months, or 14 years, as opposed to 384 months, or 32 years. Specifically, in addition to the punishment he would face for Count One, Petitioner would face two mandatory minimum consecutive sentences of seven years on Counts Two and Twelve. See Indictment at 2, 7 (charging Petitioner with two separate violations of 18 U.S.C. § 924(c)(1)(A)(ii) under Counts Two and Twelve); see also 18 U.S.C. § 924(c)(1)(A)(ii) (2022) (West) (providing that, “in addition to the punishment provided for such crime of violence” in Count One, a convicted person “shall ... be sentenced to a term of imprisonment of not less than 7 years”); and 18 U.S.C. § 924(c)(1)(D)(ii) (prohibiting any “term of imprisonment imposed on a person under this subsection” from “run[ning] concurrently with any other term of imprisonment imposed on the person, including any term of imprisonment imposed for the crime of violence ... during which the firearm was used, carried, or possessed”).4 In short, Petitioner was sentenced “a full [18] years longer ‘than what Congress has now deemed an adequate punishment for comparable § 924(c) conduct.’ ” McCoy, 981 F.3d at 285 (quoting United States v. Redd, 444 F. Supp. 3d 717, 723 (E.D. Va. 2020)). The Court finds that the severity of Petitioner's sentence and the enormous disparity of almost two decades' incarceration, compared to what he would face today, constitute extraordinary and compelling reasons for relief. Id. … Petitioner was only 20 years old when he engaged in the instant offense conduct and only 21 years old at the time that he was sentenced to 39 years in prison. See PSR at 2-4 (Petitioner was born on June 1, 1987, participated in the offense conduct between December 11, 2007, and January 31, 2008, and was sentenced on January 5, 2009). He has therefore been incarcerated for almost his entire adult life. See United States v. Bailey, 547 F. Supp. 3d 518, 524 (E.D. Va. 2021) (granting compassionate release after considering, in part, that petitioner had been incarcerated “well over half his life and virtually all of his adult life”); United States v. Wilkerson, No. 5:96cr167, 2021 WL 1062353, at *3 (E.D.N.C. Mar. 19, 2021) (same). The Court finds this fact bolsters Petitioner's claim that extraordinary and compelling reasons justify relief in his case. … Overall, the § 3553(a) factors also weigh in favor of a reduction in Petitioner's sentence. … Prior to the instant offense, at 21 years old, Petitioner had already developed a lengthy criminal history dating back to when he was 15. … While incarcerated and awaiting sentencing, Petitioner was diagnosed with major depression, cannabis dependence, alcohol abuse, and antisocial behavior. Id. at ¶ 67. Petitioner notes that his untreated mental illness likely contributed to the poor judgment he exercised prior to his incarceration. Pet'r's Mot. at 16. The PSR also reflects that Petitioner's criminal history runs parallel to his history of substance abuse. … As Petitioner himself concedes, his disciplinary record is not insignificant. Pet'r's Mot. at 18. He incurred three infractions in 2010 for being in an unauthorized area and refusing to obey an order, and did not incur any infractions for nearly seven years thereafter. Id. at Ex. 2, 2. Between 2017 and 2020, Petitioner accrued 18 infractions for being insolent to a staff member, being unsanitary or untidy, being in an unauthorized area, refusing a work assignment, refusing to obey an order, assaulting without serious injury, threatening bodily harm, and engaging in sexual acts. Id. As a result of these infractions, Petitioner was sent to the Special Management Unit (SMU) at AUSP Thomson from October 2019 until February 2021, where he describes he endured conditions that were “unimaginably punitive and severe.” Pet'r's Mot. at 18-20. Petitioner successfully worked his way out of SMU and has not incurred any disciplinary infractions since 2020. Id. at 19-20. Despite Petitioner's “past transgressions,” the Court also gives significant weight to the “multitude of redemptive measures” that he has taken since he was initially sentenced. United States v. Martin, 916 F.3d 389, 397 (4th Cir. 2019). To his credit, Petitioner appears to have maintained a strong support system while incarcerated. Pet'r's Mot. at 20-21. Indeed, Petitioner's parents indicate that their relationships with him have strengthened over the course of his imprisonment. … Further, Petitioner's release plan provides the Court with confidence that he is unlikely to recidivate and that the public will be protected because Petitioner plans to enter a vastly different situation than the one he faced when he committed this offense. See 18 U.S.C. § 3553(a)(2)(B)-(C). Specifically, upon release, Petitioner plans to live with his mother and stepfather, attend church, and take advantage of the various employment opportunities available to him. Pet'r's Mot. at Exs. 5-7. Remarkably, Petitioner has numerous people committed to assisting him with all aspects of his reentry so that he can be a productive member of society. Id. As he readjusts, the Court notes that he will also be subject to a period of five years of supervised 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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