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November 23, 2021: COMPASSIONATE RELEASE and BOP COVID-19 BLOG




Quick Facts (Full BOP Stats can be found here) Currently positive-testing inmates: 107 (up from 105) Currently positive-testing staff: 258 (down from 259) Recovered inmates: 42,290 (unchanged) Recovered staff: 8,453 (up from 8434)


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

McKean FCI: 21 (unchanged

Hazelton FCI: 6 (unchanged)

Butner FMC: 5 (unchanged)

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

Florence ADMAX USP: 17 (unchanged)

Carswell FMC: 13 (unchanged)

McKean FCI: 13 (unchanged)

System-wide testing results: Presently, BOP has 134,270 federal inmates in BOP-managed institutions and 14,864 in community-based facilities. Today's stats: Completed tests: 125,823 (up from 125,821) Positive tests: 41,984 (up from 41,982)


Total vaccine doses administered: 255,278 (up from 254,455)


Case Note: Robbery defendant's sentence reduced because disproportionate in light of changes in law and sentencing trends...


In U.S. v. DAVID HOWARD, 2021 WL 5416950 (D. Md. Nov. 18, 2021) (Blake, J.), the court considers, among other things, the length of average sentence at the time of sentencing versus today in granting partial reduction for defendant sentenced under stacking scheme, explaining: "First, Howard's sentence is disproportionate to the sentence he would likely receive if sentenced today. Under the current law, Howard would be subject to a mandatory 168-month sentence for his § 924(c) convictions, two consecutive seven-year sentences. This is drastically different from the 384-month mandatory minimum Howard faced at the time of his sentencing. … Second, the court considers whether the sentence imposed is unusually or grossly lengthy in comparison to sentences currently imposed for similar or more serious offenses. The average sentence imposed from 2016 to 2020 where the primary sentencing guideline is U.S.S.G. § 2B3.1, Robbery, was 107 months for an individual with a criminal history category similar to Howard's. United States Sentencing Commission, Interactive Data Analyzer, Average and Median Sentence Length, 2016–2020. Guideline § 2B3.1, Criminal History Category IIII, https://ida.ussc.gov/analytics/saw.dll?Dashboard (last accessed Nov. 2, 2021). Only one-third of individuals sentenced under this guideline received a sentence of 120 months or greater. Id. The seriousness of Howard's offenses, and the mandatory minimum penalties associated with them, certainly required a sentence that exceeded 120 months, but the 384-month sentence he received would be highly unusual today even given the seriousness of the offense. See United States v. Dorsett, Crim. No. 19-546-GLR, ECFs 27, 39 (defendant sentenced to 150 months for series of nine bank robberies and attempted robberies, committed while on escape status from a halfway house after release for a previous bank robbery conviction); United States v. Johnson, Crim. No. 19-352-GLR, ECFs 44, 56 (defendant sentenced to 141 months for series of seven attempted or completed armed bank robberies in which he stated in demand notes that he had a firearm); United States v. Tingler, Crim. No. 19-257-DKC, ECFs 109, 162 (defendant sentenced to 168 months after pleading guilty to committing two armed bank robberies during which he brandished a firearm and no victims were physically injured). And defendants who were involved, unlike Howard, in serious physical violence in connection with an armed robbery have received sentences significantly below the thirty-two years Howard received. See, e.g., United States v. Smith, Crim. No. 19-205-RDB, ECFs 151, 153 (defendant sentenced to 240 months for armed robbery of a food service business during which he brandished a firearm at employees and a co-defendant shot an employee of the store); United States v. Day, No. 19-506-RDB, ECFs 146, 178 (defendant sentenced to 121 months for single armed robbery in which he kicked one victim, a pregnant woman, in the stomach, and struck another repeatedly with his firearm). More striking still, Howard's sentence exceeds some sentences recently imposed where a death resulted. See, e.g., United States v. Plummer, Crim. No. GLR-17-223, ECF 460, 627 (defendant sentenced to 300 months after admitting to firing multiple gunshots into a vehicle, resulting in the death of a child). This factor weighs in favor of finding Howard has presented an extraordinary and compelling reason for a reduction in sentence. … In sum, weighing in favor of a reduction in sentence are the sentencing disparities caused by the imposition of a stacked § 924(c) sentence and Howard's promising institutional conduct. But neither of these considerations persuade the court that immediate release would be appropriate, as Howard has not yet served even the minimum sentence the court would consider today and his health condition does not strongly indicate a risk of severe illness from COVID-19. Considering these factors together, the court is persuaded that Howard has presented an extraordinary and compelling reason for a reduction in sentence, but not for immediate release. … For the foregoing reasons, Howard's motion for sentence reduction (ECF 447) will be granted and his sentence will be reduced to a total of 216 months, followed by a five-year term of supervised release.”


Death Watch (Note: The BOP press website announces BOP COVID-related deaths here.) The BOP has identified no new COVID-19 fatality. Total inmate COVID-related deaths remain at 267. Ten of the inmate fatalities died while on home confinement. Staff deaths remain at 7.

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