The district court granted compassionate release to a 51-year-old defendant with pre-existing health conditions (notably asthma and prior heart attack). The prison where Defendant was incarcerated had 143 active COVID-19 cases at the time of the decision, and nine people incarcerated there had already died of Covid-19. The judge stressed that Defendant had served 75% of his sentence, had only one disciplinary infraction from his incarceration, had a limited criminal history, had a long history of substance abuse, and was only a minor participant in the conspiracy for which he was convicted.
United States v. Bright, No. 2:15CR00015-005, 2020 WL 2537508 (W.D. Va. May 19, 2020)
Criminal (Federal Charges)
Preliminary Injunction (PI), Release, Temporary Restraining Order (TRO)
Type of Court
Federal District Court
Type of Case
Elderly, Immigrant Detention, Post-Conviction Detention [jail or prison], Pre-Existing Health Conditions, Pretrial Detention [jail], Significant Criminal History
Compassionate Release Case
Compassionate Release Specific Characteristics
Has a significant criminal history
Case Tracking Number
MORE CASE INFORMATION
Place of Incarceration
Name of Facility
Eighth Amendment - Deliberate Indifference, Substantive Due Process - Deliberate Indifference (both 14th and 5th Amendments), Substantive Due Process - Punitive Detention (both 14th and 5th Amendments)
Defendants' sentence was reduced to time served; Defendant was required to serve four (4) months of home incarceration upon release; Defendant was required to comply with government requirements applicable to his place of residence or employment issued to reduce infection by the coronavirus
Conspiring to possess with intent to distribute Alpha-PVP, a controlled substance, in violation of 21 U.S.C. §§ 846 and 841(b)(1)(C).
Compassionate Release Exhaustion Holdingsin Federal Case
An individual can move for compassionate release after 30 days have passed from the date the application was submitted to the warden, irrespective of whether the warden has granted or denied the request., Other, The court found that it could consider the compassionate release motion after 30 days have passed from the date the application was submitted to the warden, even though the warden had not responded to the request at all (except confirming receipt of the request)
51 years old, asthma (severity unspecified), history of substance abuse (alcohol, marijuana, pain pills, bath salts)
COVID-19 Positive or Symptomatic
COVID-19 in Jail Prison or Detention Center
Organization Legal Filings Templates and Decisions
Federal Defenders of New York
Crowdsourced legal documents from around the country related to COVID-19 and incarceration, organized, collected, and summarized for public defenders, litigators, and other advocates. Created and managed by Bronx Defenders, Columbia Law School’s Center for Institutional and Social Change, UCLA Law COVID-19 Behind Bars Data Project, and Zealous. Mostly federal court opinions, but now expanding to states and legal filings, declarations, and exhibits.
This resource is designed to help lawyers, advocates, researchers, journalists, and others interested in challenging, remedying, or drawing attention to the grave risk that Covid-19 poses to individuals who are detained.