United States District Court, D. Maryland
L. Russell, III United States District Judge
MATTER is before the Court on Defendant Kenya Moore's
Motion to Dismiss (ECF No. 14) and Plaintiff Dana Carlton
Rich's Motion for Writ of Habeas Corpus (ECF No. 15). The
Motions are ripe for disposition, and no hearing is
necessary. See Local Rule 105.6 (D.Md. 2016). For
the reasons outlined below, the Court will grant Rich's
Motion for Writ of Habeas Corpus, which it construes as a
Supplement to the habeas claims contained in this hybrid
Complaint, and will grant in part and deny without prejudice
in part Moore's Motion.
incarcerated at the Maryland Correctional Training Center in
Hagerstown, Maryland. (Compl. at 1, ECF No. 1). On August 19,
2014, Rich pleaded guilty to armed robbery and use of a
firearm in the commission of a violent crime in the Circuit
Court for Baltimore County, Maryland. (Compl. Ex. A at 1, ECF
No. 1-1; Id. Ex. B at 1, ECF No. 1-2); see also
State v. Rich, No. 03-K-14-000967 (Cir.Ct.Balt.Cty.).
The Court sentenced Rich to two concurrent twenty-year
sentences, with all but five years suspended. (Compl. Ex. F
at 1-2, ECF No. 1-6; Compl. at 3). Rich's commitment
order, dated August 19, 2014, indicates that he was eligible
for parole. (Compl. Ex. F at 2). Rich also earned good
conduct or diminution credits in prison and, accounting for
these credits, his release date was June 9, 2017. (Compl. Ex.
G, ECF No. 1-7).
alleges that, applying his earned diminution credits, he was
scheduled for mandatory supervision release in May
2017. (Compl. at 2; Id. Ex. B ¶
2). In anticipation of his release, Rich was placed on home
detention on April 11, 2017. (Compl. Ex. G; Compl. at 3).
April 12, 2017, Rich was removed from home detention and the
Division of Correction (“DOC”) notified him in
writing that he was ineligible for mandatory supervision
release based on his conviction for use of a firearm in the
commission of a violent crime. The notice states, in relevant
You are not eligible for release on mandatory supervision
because you are not eligible for parole on your sentence for
a violent crime. Diminution of confinement credits cannot be
applied to reduce the length of your incarceration. Upon
reaching the maximum expiration date, you will be released by
expiration of sentence.
(Compl. Ex. A).
notice explained that Rich's firearms conviction was a
violent crime as defined in Md. Code Ann., Corr. Servs.
§ 7-101(m), and the crime occurred after October 1,
2009, thereby making him ineligible for parole and mandatory
release during his confinement under Md. Code Ann., Corr.
Servs. § 7-501(b). (Compl. Ex. A). Rich states that he was
informed that he must serve his five-year term “day for
day” without the benefit of diminution credits. (Compl.
at 3; Id. Ex. A). Rich asserts that he is entitled
to the benefit of the diminution credits that he earned.
(Compl. at 3; Id. Ex. G). He pleads that he was
“stripped of all his day[s], ” and his right to
due process was violated. (Compl. at 3; Id. Ex. G at
1-2). Rich's superseding commitment record, dated October
12, 2017, shows that he must serve the first five years of
his sentence without consideration for or release on parole.
(Def.'s Mot. Dismiss [“Def.'s Mot.”] Ex.
B at 9- 10, ECF No. 14-3).
August 3, 2017, Rich, who is self-represented, filed his
Complaint, bringing a hybrid civil rights and habeas action.
(ECF No. 1). In his Complaint, Rich challenges the
calculation of his term of confinement, requests $100, 000
damages for “unjust incarceration, ” and seeks
immediate release from imprisonment. (Compl. at 4-6).
December 18, 2017, Moore, a Commitment Records Specialist
Supervisor for the DOC, filed a Motion to Dismiss under
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) and 28 U.S.C. §
2254(b). (ECF No. 14). Rich filed an Opposition on February
12, 2018. (ECF No. 16). To date, the Court has no record that
Moore filed a Reply. On December 27, 2017, before filing his
Opposition, Rich filed a “Motion for Writ of Habeas
Corpus” seeking a hearing on his allegedly improper
confinement. (ECF No. 15). Rich's Motion is
Standard of Review
purpose of a Rule 12(b)(6) motion is to test the sufficiency
of a complaint, ” not to “resolve contests
surrounding the facts, the merits of a claim, or the
applicability of defenses.” King v.
Rubenstein, 825 F.3d 206, 214 (4th Cir. 2016) (quoting
Edwards v. City of Goldsboro, 178 F.3d 231, 243-44
(4th Cir. 1999)). A complaint fails to state a claim if it
does not contain “a short and plain statement of the
claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief, ”
Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2), or does not “state a claim to
relief that is plausible on its face, ” Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (quoting Bell Atl.
Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007)). A claim is
facially plausible “when the plaintiff pleads factual
content that allows the court to draw the reasonable
inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct
alleged.” Id. (citing Twombly, 550
U.S. at 556). “Threadbare recitals of the elements of a
cause of action, supported by mere conclusory statements, do
not suffice.” Id. (citing Twombly,
550 U.S. at 555). Though the plaintiff is not required to
forecast evidence to prove ...