Before King, P.J., Bridges, And Moore, JJ.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: King, P.J.
DATE OF JUDGMENT: 10/16/1998
TRIAL JUDGE: HON. JANNIE M. LEWIS
COURT FROM WHICH APPEALED:YAZOO COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT
NATURE OF THE CASE: CIVIL - POST CONVICTION RELIEF
TRIAL COURT DISPOSITION: 10/16/1998: THE COURT AFFIRMS THE DECISION OF THE MISSISSIPPI DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS TERMINATING ELDRIDGE FROM THE REGIMENTED INMATE DISCIPLINE PROGRAM AND PLACING HIM IN THE PRISON POPULATION FOR SERVICE OF HIS SENTENCES.
DISPOSITION: AFFIRMED - 8/08/00
¶1. Billy Joe Eldridge, a/k/a Billy Joe, pled guilty to two counts of grand larceny in the Yazoo County Circuit Court. Eldridge was sentenced to serve five years on each count in the custody of the Mississippi Department of Corrections. Eldridge's sentences were suspended conditioned upon his successful completion of the Regimented Inmate Discipline (RID) Program at the Mississippi State Penitentiary. Among the requirements for successful completion of RID, is the obligation to refrain from any and all types and acts of gang activity.
¶2. Having been found to have violated this requirement, Eldridge was removed from RID. After removal, Eldridge sought relief in the Yazoo County Circuit Court, pursuant to the Uniform Post- Conviction Collateral Relief Act, alleging an insufficiency of evidence to support his removal. The circuit court denied relief, and Eldridge has appealed contending (1) the circuit court erred in affirming his removal from the RID Program; and (2) the circuit court erred in failing to suspend his sentence.
¶3. This Court finds no error and affirms.
¶4. On August 4, 1997, Eldridge pled guilty to two counts of grand larceny, and was sentenced to five years on each count in the custody of the Mississippi Department of Corrections, to be served consecutively. The Yazoo County Circuit Court suspended these sentences conditioned upon Eldridge's successful completion of the RID Program.
¶5. Eldridge entered RID on October 28, 1997. RID is a four step program. Eldridge had completed step one, and was very close to the completion of step two. However, a program drill instructor discovered a letter which indicated that Eldridge had been initiated into a gang, the Black Gangster Disciples. This letter, which contained gang symbols and the date of birth, home telephone number, home address and age of a person identified only as "Billy Joe," stated Billy Joe had come into the organization of his own volition. The information contained in the letter was consistent with that of Eldridge.
¶6. Upon being questioned about the letter, Eldridge acknowledged that he was "Billy Joe" and had joined the Black Gangster Disciples. Eldridge also acknowledged being told that gang activity would cause him to be removed from RID. Having received this information, ...