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October 28, 2022: COMPASSIONATE RELEASE, COVID-19, and BOP BLOG



Fast Facts (Full BOP stats can be found here)


Confirmed active cases at 84 BOP facilities and 11 RRCs

Currently positive-testing inmates: 189 (up from 186) Currently positive-testing staff: 333 (down from 342) Recovered inmates currently in the BOP: 48,428 (unchanged) Recovered staff: 14,343 (up from 14,329)


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

Butner FCI: 32 (unchanged)

Houston FCI: 21 (unchanged)

McKean FCI: 21 (unchanged)


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

Central Office HQ: 58 (unchanged)

Rochester FMC: 27 (unchanged)

Dublin FCI: 20 (up from 18)

System-wide testing results: Presently, BOP has 143,870 federal inmates in BOP-managed institutions and 14,112 in community-based facilities. Today's stats: Completed tests: 128,808 (up from 128,678) Positive tests: 55,328 (up from 55,326)


Total vaccine doses administered: 333,202 (up from 333,010)


Case Notes: Three weeks to the door and a hernia the size of a softball win defendant release...


In U.S. v. Oliver, No. 3:17-CR-041, 2022 WL 14151080c(E.D. Tenn. Oct. 24, 2022) (Jordan, J.), the court, after twice denying relief, grants defendant's third pro se petition, though only on ground presented to BOP, which was that BOP ignored a hernia now the size of a softball, explaining: "In December 2017, Judge Reeves sentenced the defendant to a below-guidelines term of 92 months' imprisonment for conspiring to distribute methamphetamine. The defendant is presently housed at FPC Alderson with a projected release date of November 14, 2022. See Bureau of Prisons, https://www.bop.gov/inmateloc/ (last visited Oct. 24, 2022). She now moves for compassionate release due to an abdominal hernia and because her mother “needs me home.” … The defendant submitted a compassionate release request to the BOP based in part on her abdominal hernia. [Doc. 370, p. 3]. The Court thus has authority under § 3582(c)(1)(A) to address that issue. See Alam, 960 F.3d at 832. There is, however, no evidence that the defendant has requested compassionate release from the BOP based on her mother's needs. As such, the United States argues that the Court does not have jurisdiction to review that latter claim. See United States v. Williams, 987 F.3d 700, 703 (7th Cir. 2021) (“[A]n inmate is required to present the same or similar ground for compassionate release in a request to the Bureau as in a motion to the court.”). … Turning to the defendant's own health, the Court has previously noted that the defendant has indeed been diagnosed with an abdominal hernia. [Doc. 391, p. 4]. “Surgery is indicated for the hernia, but as of October 13, 2020, physician records state that she was ‘not having significant pain or debility from the hernia.’ Her weight made her ‘a poor surgical candidate. In February of this year, the hernia was noted to be “about the size of a softball.” [Doc. 415]. In April, the defendant sought medical care, reporting that she had aggravated the hernia while working. [Id.]. A “large protruding hernia” was noted, with associated abdominal tenderness and apparent pain. [Id.]. The physician “reduced” the hernia and deemed it “not [in] an emergent state.” [Id.]. In May, the hernia's size had increased, as had the associated pain. [Id.]. The defendant's 2022 medical complaints regarding her documented “softball size” hernia have been consistent. [Id.; doc. 410]. She has also filed a September 2021 photograph of herself. [Doc. 410]. The defendant is fully clothed in that picture, but the hernia is nonetheless apparent. The Court finds that the defendant's worsening hernia (with no relief in sight) constitutes an extraordinary and compelling ground for compassionate release on the particular facts of this case. The Court also finds that the defendant's release is now consistent with 18 U.S.C. § 3553(a). … A mere three weeks remain on this defendant's sentence, and the record shows that she is in need of significant medical care. The Court sees no point in further delay of that care. The Court has previously recognized the defendant's serious involvement in this conspiracy [doc. 391, p. 7, 8] but she has now almost served the entirety of her sentence.”


Death Watch (Note: The BOP press website announces BOP COVID-related deaths here.) No new deaths within the BOP have been announced, leaving the reported inmate death toll at 309. Eleven of the inmates died while on home confinement. Staff deaths remain at 7.


Job Posting: The Center for Justice and Human Dignity

The Center for Justice and Human Dignity is an education, advocacy, and training center, focused on advancing meaningful change in prison sentencing practices with the goal of reducing the number of people sent to prison and expanding the judicial use of alternative-to-incarceration sanctions.


The Center for Justice and Human Dignity is seeking an Executive Director who will have overall programmatic, operational, development, and fundraising responsibility for the development of CJHD and its staff, programs, public engagement, and execution of its mission. The Executive Director will establish and operationalize programmatic goals and strategic initiatives in alignment with stakeholder interests (including the board and the organization’s founder). Their role will include developing relationships with partners, establishing and implementing fundraising strategy, and leading public relations/media, programs, and operations. The Executive Director will be responsible for (in collaboration with the board and founding partner) the development and implementation of a self-sustaining, funding infrastructure to establish the organization’s full financial independence from its incubator. This position is remote and open to applicants in any location within the United States.


Respond to: aviva@aleph-institute.org


Complete Posting can be viewed here.


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