United States District Court, N.D. California
April 7, 2004.
KENNETH EDWARD CAPOGRECO, Petitioner
SUPERIOR COURT OF MONTEREY COUNTY, et al, Respondent(s)
The opinion of the court was delivered by: VAUGHN WALKER, District Judge
ORDER OF DISMISSAL
Petitioner, a state prisoner incarcerated at Salinas Valley State
Prison, has filed a pro se petition for a writ of habeas corpus alleging
denial of his federal right to practice his "Wicca" religion. He seeks an
order compelling prison officials to provide him with all items necessary
for the practice of his religion, "and/of" an order compelling the
Superior Court of Monterey County "to follow its own rules of court" and
grant him relief.
The petition for a writ of habeas corpus is DISMISSED without prejudice
to filing a civil rights complaint under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Although the
Supreme Court has declined to address whether a challenge to a condition
of confinement may be brought under habeas, see Bell v. Wolfish,
441 U.S. 520, 526 n6 (1979), the preferred practice in this circuit is that
challenges to conditions of confinement be brought in a civil rights complaint, see Badea
v. Cox, 931 F.2d 573, 574 (9th Cir 1991) (civil rights action is
proper method of challenging conditions of confinement); Crawford v
Bell 599 F.2d 890, 891-92 & n1 (9th Cir 1979) (affirming
dismissal of habeas petition on basis that challenges to terms and
conditions of confinement must be brought in civil rights complaint).
Petitioner is advised that 42 U.S.C. § 1997e(a) mandates
that he exhaust California's prison administrative process before filing
suit in federal court. See 42 U.S.C. § 1997e(a).
The clerk shall close the file and terminate all pending motions as
moot. No fee is due.
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