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Name: In re Andres
Case #: D067039
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 1
Opinion Date: 02/23/2016

Court properly granted inmate habeas relief to require CDCR to follow its own regulations and process his administrative (“602”) appeal. Andres alleged that he was the victim of excessive force by correctional officers who shot him with a bean bag gun and struck him with a baton while he was lying prone on the floor. He claimed he prepared an administrative appeal five days later to redress his grievance and sent it to the prison appeals coordinator via institutional mail. Andres did not receive a response so he filed a habeas petition. The court granted relief, ordering the warden to process his administrative appeal. The warden sought reconsideration on the ground that Andres sent his appeal by institutional mail rather than placing it in the secured 602 appeal collection box and the collection box was the exclusive means for inmates to submit 602 administrative appeals. The court denied the reconsideration motion because the warden’s collection box evidence was not newly discovered. In the alternative, the court rejected the argument on the merits, finding that the relevant regulation (Cal. Code Regs. tit. 15, § 3084) authorizes inmates to submit an administrative appeal via institutional mail. The warden appealed. Held: Affirmed. Inmates may appeal any policy, decision, action, condition, or omission by the department or its staff that the inmate . . . can demonstrate as having a material adverse effect upon his or her health, safety, or welfare.” (Cal. Code Regs., tit. 15, § 3084.1.) An appeal must be submitted within 30 days of the action or event being appealed. However, there is no requirement in the applicable regulations that an appeal be submitted through a particular mail delivery system. Accordingly, the superior court properly ordered the warden to process Andres’s appeal.

The full opinion is available on the court’s website here: