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September 24, 2021: COMPASSIONATE RELEASE and BOP COVID-19 BLOG




Quick Facts: Currently positive-testing inmates: 631 (up from 627) Currently positive-testing staff: 547 (up from 530) Recovered inmates: 42,952 (down from 42,964) Recovered staff: 7,624 (up from 7,615)


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

Herlong FCI: 114 (up from 110)

Sheridan FCI: 93 (up from 92)

Coleman Low FCI: 87 (unchanged)

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

Oakdale I FCI: 27 (up from 26)

Beaumont USP: 25 (unchanged)

Phoenix FCI: (unchanged)

System-wide testing results: Presently, BOP has 131,517 federal inmates in BOP-managed institutions and 14,553 in community-based facilities. Today's stats: Completed tests: 121,947 (up from 121,690) Positive tests: 43,112 (up from 43,086)

Total vaccine doses administered: 225,251

Case Note: 110-month sentence for robbery/firearm defendant cut short in light of defendant's worsening Parkinson's and dementia...


In U.S. v. ELMER FLOYD WIMAN, 2021 WL 4307013 (S.D. Ind. Sept. 22, 2021) (Young, J.), the court found that defendant's 2025 release date notwithstanding, his worsening Parkinson’s and dementia defeats the purpose of further incarceration and so release is warranted, explaining: "In 2016, the Court1 sentenced Mr. Wiman to an aggregate sentence of 110 months of imprisonment after a jury found him guilty of: (1) robbery of a credit union, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 2113(a) (Count 1); (2) carrying a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 924(c)(1)(A)(i) (Count 2); and (3) being a felon in possession of a firearm, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1) (Count 3). Dkt. 114. The sentence consisted of concurrent 50-month sentences for Counts 1 and 3 and a mandatory, consecutive 60-month sentence for Count 2. Mr. Wiman had a significant criminal history, including: (1) a 1972 conviction for armed robbery; (2) 6 convictions for burglary or attempted burglary (4 convictions in 1981 and 2 in 1990); (3) a 1981 conviction for attempted escape; (4) a 1983 conviction for robbery; (5) a 1990 conviction for escape; and (6) a 1994 conviction for being a felon in possession of a firearm. … Mr. Wiman is now 73 years old. He is currently incarcerated at FMC Devens. He has been in custody since his arrest in March 2015—that is, he has been in custody for about 6-and-a-half years. The Bureau of Prisons ("BOP") lists Mr. Wiman's anticipated release date (with good-conduct time included) as July 27, 2025. … Mr. Wiman has been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease and Parkinson's dementia. Dkt. 155-1 at 6. When he filed his motion for compassionate release, he was housed at FCI Greenville. In May 2021, however, he was transferred to a memory disorder unit at FMC Devens. Id. at 150, 163–68, 182. At the time of his transfer, medical staff noted that he could shower independently but required cuing. Id. at 179. Notes from his intake assessment reflect that his speech was low and garbled at times; his gait was very shuffled; and he had a history of falling. Id. at 162, 165. Two days after his arrival, a medical staff member assessed Mr. Wiman and noted that he needed assistance ambulating to the shower and physical therapy, did not know his age, and could not recall the date within the month, the day of the week, or the year. Id. at 150. Four days after that, medical staff noted that Mr. Wiman required assistance to complete activities of daily living and required meal set up and prompting to sleep in his bed. Id. at 139. He had been placed on quarantine as a precaution following his transfer, but he was released from quarantine early because he was becoming agitated and was decompensating. Id. at 132, 135. Over the last four months, Mr. Wiman has continued to experience problems with his gait and with balance. See id. at 22, 23, 25, 32, 35, 36,40, 41, 46, 47, 52, 57, 62, 118, 123, 132. He has fallen multiple times. Id. at 13, 38, 49, 54, 59, 70, 79, 87. On multiple occasions, medical staff have observed that he was not oriented to place or time or that he was confused. Id. at 4, 18, 29, 115, 121. He has reported visual hallucinations. Id. at 121. On July 20, 2021, medical staff reported that Mr. Wiman (incorrectly) believed that people were outside his cell accusing him of touching a child and that he had placed a bar of soap in a sock so that he could protect himself. Id. at 18. One day later, medical staff reported that Mr. Wiman did not want to come out of his cell for breakfast because the officers were "poisoning that little girl's brain" and "telling that little girl lies about me." Id. at 17. As of August 10, 2021, medical records show that Mr. Wiman uses a walker and requires assistance with his activities of daily living. … Importantly, Parkinson's disease is a progressive disorder that cannot be cured. See https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/parkinsons-disease/symptoms-causes/syc-20376055 (last visited Sept. 20, 2021). While medications can improve symptoms, those symptoms worsen as the condition progresses over time. Id. That is, there is no reason to believe that Mr. Wiman's condition will improve. To the contrary, it will likely continue to deteriorate. … Mr. Wiman's ability to function in the prison environment is seriously compromised, and there is no realistic prospect that he will recover. In these circumstances, extraordinary and compelling reasons support a reduction in sentence. … As recognized above, Mr. Wiman's conduct in this case was serious, and his criminal history is concerning. In addition, he still has about 4 years remaining on his sentence. But Mr. Wiman has been incarcerated for more than 6 years, representing a substantial sanction that appropriately recognizes the seriousness of his conduct. He has maintained clean conduct over the past 6 years. Moreover—and most importantly—he suffers from debilitating medical conditions that have reduced his ability to function in the correctional setting and have made his 6 years in prison more grueling than they would otherwise have been. His health has deteriorated significantly in recent months, and it is likely to continue to deteriorate. On the facts of this case, further incarceration would be greater than necessary to serve the purposes of punishment set forth in § 3553(a)(2). When viewed in light of Mr. Wiman's worsening health and assuming that an appropriate release plan can be developed for him, the Court finds that the § 3553(a) factors weigh in favor of reducing Mr. Wiman's sentence to time served.”


Death Watch: The BOP has reported one additional -- as yet unnamed -- inmate death, bring the inmate death toll to 257. Eight of these inmates died while on home confinement. Staff deaths remain at 6.




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