In a story that highlights one of the media’s regular misconceptions (or mischaracterizations) about how the federal Bureau of Prisons operates, Cleveland’s NewsChannel5 reports that is investigators:
[…]have uncovered former Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas Judge Bridget McCafferty has been living in a halfway house in Cleveland since June.
McCafferty was released to Oriana House after serving nine months of a 14-month prison sentence in an Alderson, West Virginia, prison.
The BOP has not released McCafferty. It transferred McCafferty from the Alderson prison camp to a Residential Reentry Center (RRC or halfway house) closer to her release residence in anticipation of her scheduled release from federal custody next month. The BOP recognizes, as it must, that:
Inmates are legally eligible to be placed in an RRC at any time during their prison sentence. Federal Courts have made clear that RRCs are penal or correctional facilities within the meaning of the applicable statutes.
See Goldings v. Winn, 383 F.3d 17 (1st Cir. 2004); 18 U.S.C. §§ 3621(b) and 3624(c)(1).
It is also likely that McCafferty will serve some portion of her pre-release term on home confinement. By statute, the final 10% of a federal prisoner’s term of imprisonment, up to six months, can be served on home confinement. See 18 U.S.C. § 3624(c)(2). Again, though, individuals so designated remain under BOP custody and control.