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Ferguson v. Mississippi Department of Corrections

August 18, 1998

RONALD J. FERGUSON, APPELLANT
v.
MISSISSIPPI DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS, APPELLEE



Before Thomas, P.j., Hinkebein, King, And Southwick, JJ.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Per Curiam:

Ferguson v. Mississippi Department of Corrections, 97-CA-00451-COA

PER CURIAM AFFIRMANCE MEMORANDUM OPINION THIS OPINION IS NOT DESIGNATED FOR PUBLICATION AND MAY NOT BE CITED, PURSUANT TO M.R.A.P. 35-B

DATE OF JUDGMENT: 03/20/97

TRIAL JUDGE: HON. GRAY EVANS

COURT FROM WHICH APPEALED: SUNFLOWER COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT

NATURE OF THE CASE: CIVIL - POST CONVICTION RELIEF

TRIAL COURT DISPOSITION: TRIAL COURT DENIED REQUESTED RELIEF, DISMISSING PETITION

DISPOSITION AFFIRMED

This appeal arises from an order of the Circuit Court of Sunflower County wherein that court refused to grant Ronald Ferguson's request that he, an inmate incarcerated with the Mississippi Department of Corrections [hereinafter MDOC], be granted credit for time served in a Kentucky jail while fighting extradition back to this state following an escape from MDOC custody.

In 1993, Ferguson was convicted on six felony counts including burglary and grand larceny and consequently placed in the MDOC's Regimented Inmate Discipline Program. However, in May of the next year, he escaped. This unsanctioned freedom lasted until June 28, 1994, when Kentucky law enforcement officials arrested him on the state warrant which had been issued the day following his flight. But because he refused to waive extradition, a warrant was not issued by Kentucky's governor until September 14, 1994. Ferguson was thereafter retrieved by Mississippi agents on September 18. He was granted credit for these final five days, but not the preceding 78 days during which he resisted extradition.

As did the trial court, we feel that Holland v. State , 418 So. 2d 73 (Miss. 1982), is controlling. Much as in the case sub judice, Holland, upon his capture, filed a motion for post-conviction relief requesting credit for time served in an Indiana jail while contesting his extradition to Mississippi. Holland , 418 So. 2d at 74. On appeal from the denial of this application, our § supreme court held that 99-19-23 of the Mississippi Code, which requires that a prisoner be given credit toward his sentence for time served in this state's municipal or county jails while awaiting trial or during the appeals process, was wholly inapplicable. Id. As the court reasoned:

[T]o hold otherwise would encourage an accused to flee this State and seek refuge in a state or locality of his own choosing, and fight extradition knowing that any time spent in jail in such state would be credited to any sentence received by him upon conviction. Such holding would be an impediment to, rather than an aid to, criminal Justice.

Id. Though Holland fled the state prior to rather than following his conviction, the facts of that case are otherwise sufficiently analogous to those presently before us so as to make the underlying rationale equally befitting. Therefore, we likewise hold that Ferguson's appeal is ...


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