SEITU v. PAN, No. 1:2010cv00494 - Document 18 (D.D.C. 2010)

Court Description: MEMORANDUM AND OPINION. Signed by Judge John D. Bates on 6/1/10. (ms, )

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UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA KWASI SEITU, Petitioner, v. Civil Action No. 10-0494 (JDB) FLORENCE PAN, et al., Respondents. MEMORANDUM OPINION This matter is before the Court on consideration of Kwasi Seitu s petition for a writ of habeas corpus and responses to the Court s order to show cause. At the time petitioner filed his habeas petition, he was detained at St. Elizabeth s Hospital pending an evaluation of his competence to face a misdemeanor drug charge brought in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia. United States Mot. to Dismiss Pet r s Habeas Corpus Pet. ( U.S. Mot. ) at 1-2. Petitioner was admitted to St. Elizabeth s Hospital on February 25, 2010, and was discharged on April 14, 2010. Resp t Saint Elizabeth[ ]s Hospital s Resp. to Order to Show Cause ( St. Elizabeth s Resp. ), Jackson Decl. ¶¶ 6-7. Although the government dismissed the drug charge on April 28, 2010, petitioner still faced charges for two violations of the Bail Reform Act ( BRA ) and for contempt of court. U.S. Mot. at 2. He was found guilty of the BRA violations and the court imposed a 90-day sentence with credit for time served on one count and probation on the other. Id.; St. Elizabeth s Resp., Ex. 1 (Judgment in a Criminal Case, Case Nos. 2010 CMD 3215 and 2009 CMD 18166). In addition, the court -1- imposed a two-day sentence upon his conviction for contempt. U.S. Mot. at 2; St. Elizabeth s Resp., Ex. 3 (Judgment in a Criminal Case, Case No. 2009 CMD 8618). According to the respondent, petitioner was released from custody on April 30, 2010. See U.S. Mot., Ex. 1-2 (Case Summary, Docket # 2009CMD008618 and Release Order). According to petitioner, he was released on May 19, 2010. Pet. s Traverse of Resp. [#17] at 1. Petitioner already has received the relief he demanded release from detention, whether from St. Elizabeth s Hospital or from the D.C. Jail. Accordingly, the Court will deny the petition as moot. See In re Smith, 114 F.3d 1247, 1249 (D.C. Cir. 1997) (concluding that the appellant s release from prison rendered moot his request for habeas corpus relief); Hardesty v. Draper, 687 A.2d 1368, 1371 (D.C. 1997) (dismissing an appeal as moot because the appellant had been released from a psychiatric hospital). Petitioner s challenge to the Superior Court convictions, sentences or fines is not properly brought in this Court he must instead file a motion in the Superior Court under D.C. Code § 23-110. It is settled that a District of Columbia prisoner has no recourse to a federal judicial forum unless the local remedy is inadequate or ineffective to test the legality of his detention. Byrd v. Henderson, 119 F.3d 34, 36-37 (D.C. Cir. 1997) (internal footnote omitted). Nothing in this record suggests that the local remedy is inadequate or ineffective. An Order is issued separately. /s/ JOHN D. BATES United States District Judge DATE: June 1, 2010 -2-
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