The court granted emergency release pending sentence under 18 U.S.C. § 3145(c), which allows for release if the court finds “exceptional reasons.” First, the court found that it had the authority under § 3145(c) to grant release, as the statute only specifies that “a judicial officer” grant release given “exceptional reasons” (the U.S. Attorneys office argued that the language only applied to appellate court judges). The court then went on to find that exceptional reasons existed in this case to grant release. In its analysis, the court weighed “the relevant risk to the person detained, the community at large, and all other relevant circumstances in deciding whether the exceptional-reasons safety valve to the mandatory detention rules is available.” Notably, the court held that the uncertainty surrounding the infectiousness of Covid-19 in a detention setting was one of the factors that it considered in determining whether the “exceptional reasons” standard was met. Additionally, the court determined that there was clear and convincing evidence that the defendant wasn’t a flight risk and would not pose a danger to the community.
United States v. Harris, --- F. Supp. 3d ---, 2020 WL 1503444 (D.D.C. Mar. 26, 2020)
Criminal (Federal Charges)
Implementing Release Procedures, Release, Temporary Restraining Order (TRO)
Type of Court
Federal District Court
District of Columbia
Type of Case
Elderly, Parole or Probation Violations, Post-Conviction Detention [jail or prison], Pre-Existing Health Conditions
Compassionate Release Case
Case Tracking Number
MORE CASE INFORMATION
Place of Incarceration
Federal Detention Center [typically federal pretrial detention]
Defendant must reside with his father; Can't change address; Must use an electronic monitor; Must participate in programs as ordered by pretrial services; Cannot use the internet; Cannot have any contact with minors; Can only stay in a home with one computer and one smartphone; The computer and smartphone must be locked from defendant; Cannot possess a firearm; Every week defendant's father must submit a declaration that all of his electronic devices are locked away from defendant
18 U.S.C. § 2252(a)(2)
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., Exhaustion is subject to equitable exceptions.
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.