United States District Court, E.D. Wisconsin
RECOMMENDATION ON DEFENDANT’S MOTION TO DISMISS
FOR VIOLATION OF INTERSTATE AGREEMENT ON DETAINERS
Joseph United States Magistrate Judge
Erazo-Santa is charged in this district with Hobbs Act
Robbery, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1951(a).
Erazo-Santa was arraigned on the charge and entered a plea of
not guilty. A jury trial before the Honorable J.P.
Stadtmueller is scheduled for June 27, 2016.
me is Erazo-Santa’s motion to dismiss for violation of
the Interstate Agreement on Detainers (“IAD”).
(Docket # 14.) Erazo-Santa argues that the indictment against
him must be dismissed because he was not brought to trial
within 180 days of giving notice to the prosecutor and the
court of his desire for a prompt disposition, in violation of
the IAD. The motion has been briefed and is ready for
resolution. For the reasons explained below, I
recommend that the defendant’s motion to dismiss be
February 25, 2013, Erazo-Santa was arrested by the Milwaukee
Police for armed robbery and violating his probation.
(Gov’t Br. at 4, Docket # 16.) On August 27, 2013, a
grand jury in this district returned a one-count indictment
charging Erazo-Santa with Hobbs Act Robbery. (Docket # 1.) On
or about August 12, 2014, while serving a Wisconsin state
prison sentence at Redgranite Correctional Institution,
Erazo-Santa states that he was notified that a detainer had
been filed against him based on the indictment in this case.
(Def.’s Br. at 1, Docket # 14.) Erazo-Santa signed a
form acknowledging receipt of the detainer and indicating
that he wished to discuss the issue of prompt disposition
with his attorney. (Def.’s Br., Ex. A, Docket # 14-1.)
about August 23, 2014, Erazo-Santa sent a letter to the
records office at Redgranite Correctional Institution
indicating that he wished to pursue a prompt disposition
based on the advice of his attorney. (Def.’s Br., Ex.
B, Docket # 14-2.) On or about August 25, 2014, Redgranite
Correctional Institution presented Erazo-Santa with another
copy of the Notice of the Detainer. (Def.’s Br., Ex. C,
Docket # 14-3.) This detainer indicated that Erazo-Santa was
not eligible for prompt disposition of his case, so he
refused to sign the detainer acknowledgment. (Id.)
about August 16, 2014, Erazo-Santa sent a letter to Assistant
United States Attorney Mario Gonzales indicating that he had
been advised that a prompt disposition of his detainer was
unavailable and asked for clarification of his right to a
prompt disposition. (Def.’s Br., Ex. D, Docket # 14-4.)
The letter is addressed to AUSA Gonzales at the
“Federal Bureau of Investigation, 330 E. Kilbourn Ave.,
Suite 600” in Milwaukee. (Id.) The government
states that the United States Attorney’s Office for the
Eastern District of Wisconsin has no record of receiving the
letter. (Gov’t Br. at 6.)
about November 3, 2015, Erazo-Santa sent a letter to Chief
Judge William Griesbach stating that he was being held on a
detainer for a year and a half and had asked for a prompt
disposition several times and was told that it did not apply
to him. (Def.’s Br., Ex. E, Docket # 14-5.) He stated
that he wanted to do “whatever is necessary to resolve
this issue.” (Id.) The letter was
electronically filed on November 6, 2015. (Id.)
The Interstate Agreement on Detainers
is a multi-state agreement to “encourage the
expeditious and orderly disposition of [outstanding] charges
and determination of the proper status of any and all
detainers based on untried indictments, informations, or
complaints.” United States v. Jones, 454 F.3d
642, 646-47 (7th Cir. 2006) (citing Art. I, 18 U.S.C.App.
§ 2). Wisconsin and the United States are both parties
to the IAD. Wis.Stat. §§ 976.05, 976.06; 18
U.S.C.App. § 2.
detainer is a notice filed with a prisoner’s
institution of incarceration alerting both he and the
institution that the prisoner is wanted to face criminal
charges in another jurisdiction. Jones, 454 F.3d at
647. Practically, the detainer is a request that the prisoner
be held for the other jurisdiction’s prosecutors or
that the holding institution notify the prosecutors of the
prisoner’s pending release. Id. When a
detainer is lodged, the defendant “‘shall be
brought to trial within one hundred and eighty days after he
shall have caused to be delivered to the prosecuting
officer and the appropriate court of the prosecuting
officer’s jurisdiction written notice of . . . his
request for a final disposition to be made of the indictment
. . . .’” Id. (quoting IAD, Art. III(a),
18 U.S.C.App. § 2) (emphasis in original). The executed
demand notifies the waiting jurisdiction of the
prisoner’s intent to exercise his right to a speedy
trial. Id. The leading Supreme Court case on this
matter, Fex v. Michigan, 507 U.S. 43, 52 (1993),
found that the IAD requires actual delivery of this notice to
both the court and the prosecutor.
Application to this Case
case, Erazo-Santa argues that at least by November 6, 2015,
he had given the required written notice to the court and the
prosecution of his request for prompt disposition of his
case. (Def.’s Br. at 3.) He argues that although the
letter to the court was not “artfully drafted, ”
it made clear that he was requesting a prompt disposition.
(Id.) The government argues that the U.S.
Attorney’s Office never received the letter addressed
to AUSA Gonzales at the address of the Federal Bureau of
Investigation. (Gov’t Br. at ...