United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division
K. Majzoub, Magistrate Judge.
OPINION AND ORDER DENYING DEFENDANT'S MOTION FOR
A JUDICIAL RECOMMENDATION UNDER THE SECOND CHANCE ACT [ECF
Victoria A. Roberts, United States District Judge.
issue is whether this Court should recommend to the Bureau of
Prisons (“BOP”) that Defendant Lawrence Buckner
be allowed to serve the final nine to twelve months of his
federal sentence in a residential reentry center
(“RRC”). Because the Court's authority to
issue such a recommendation is unclear, Defendant's
motion is DENIED.
2013, Buckner was sentenced to 120 months imprisonment for
possession of a stolen firearm. Buckner was sentenced
pursuant to a Rule 11 plea agreement; he was originally
charged with being a Felon in Possession of a Firearm, in
violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1), Distribution of a
Controlled Substance, in violation of 21 U.S.C. § 841
and Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug
Trafficking Crime, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 924(c).
Buckner is scheduled to be released from prison on January
says that he has maintained a positive disciplinary record
while in prison and has completed all “core
programmatic needs programming.” He also maintains that
he has completed “an extensive number of Educational,
Adult Continuing Educational, Therapy, VA Related, Mental
Health and Recreational Programming, both as a participant
and a facilitator.” [ECF No. 51, PageID.262]. Finally,
Buckner will be 41 years of age at release and says he will
be “without job prospects, residence, or support, and
will require an extended period to secure such community and
transitional needs prior to sentence expiration.” [ECF
No. 51, PageID.262].
STANDARD OF REVIEW
federal defendant who has been convicted and sentenced to a
term of imprisonment is committed to the custody of the
Bureau of Prisons. 18 U.S.C. § 3621(a). The BOP
“is directed to transfer prisoners to a residential
reentry center as they approach the end of their sentences,
in an effort to better prepare the inmates for reentry into
the community.” See 18 U.S.C. § 3624(c).
The Second Chance Act “increased the maximum time
available for pre-release RRC placement from six months to
twelve months.” See 18 U.S.C. §
3624(c)(1). Specifically, Section 3624(c) of the Second
Chance Act states:
The Director of the Bureau of Prisons shall, to the extent
practicable, ensure that a prisoner serving a term of
imprisonment spends a portion of the final months of that
term (not to exceed 12 months), under conditions that will
afford that prisoner a reasonable opportunity to adjust and
prepare for the reentry of that prisoner into the community.
Such conditions may include a community correctional
18 U.S.C. § 3624(c)(1).
accordance with the statute, the BOP “is required to
conduct an individualized assessment of each inmate to
determine when the inmate should be placed in a residential
reentry center, ensuring that the inmate's time in a
residential reentry center is ‘of sufficient duration
to provide the greatest likelihood of successful integration
into the community.'” In making its assessment, the
BOP considers, among other factors: “(4) any statement
by the court that imposed the sentence-(A) concerning the
purposes for which the sentence to imprisonment was
determined to be warranted; or (B) recommending a type of
penal or correctional facility as appropriate.”
See 18 U.S.C. § 3624(c)(1).
says the Court should recommend to the BOP that he spend the
final nine to twelve months of his sentence in an RRC; he
says that the Second Chance Act gives district courts the
authority to make non-binding recommendations to the BOP on
prisoner reentry placement. The Government says that district
courts do not have the authority to issue post-sentencing
recommendations to the BOP; in the ...