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Lyles v. State

United States District Court, N.D. Mississippi, Aberdeen Division

May 28, 2014

SCOTTY B. LYLES, Petitioner,
v.
STATE OF MISSISSIPPI, Respondent.

MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

MICHAEL P. MILLS, Chief District Judge.

This matter comes before the Court on the pro se petition of Scotty B. Lyles, Mississippi prisoner # R4387, for a writ of habeas corpus under 28 U.S.C. § 2254. Respondent has moved to dismiss the petition as time-barred pursuant to § 2244(d), and Petitioner has responded. The matter is now ripe for resolution. For the reasons set forth below, Respondent's motion is granted, and the instant petition will be dismissed with prejudice.

Facts and Procedural History

Petitioner was convicted of false pretense in the Circuit Court of Oktibbeha County, Mississippi. By order entered on April 25, 2007, he was sentenced as an habitual offender to serve a term of life in the custody of the Mississippi Department of Corrections (Circuit Court No. 2006-0193-CR). (R. Mot. to Dismiss, Ex. A). Petitioner appealed his conviction and sentence to the Mississippi Supreme Court, and the case was assigned to the Mississippi Court of Appeals. On May 19, 2009, the Mississippi Court of Appeals affirmed the judgment of the circuit court. ( Id., Ex. B); see also Lyles v. State, 12 So.3d 532 (Miss.Ct.App. 2009) (No. 2007-KA-00993-COA). According to Respondent, Petitioner subsequently filed a "Motion for Enlargement of Time to File Motion for Rehearing, " but no motion for rehearing was ever filed. (R. Mot. to Dismiss at 3).

On July 2, 2012, Petitioner filed in the Mississippi Supreme Court an "Application for Leave to Proceed in the Trial Court" on a motion for post-conviction relief. (R. Mot. to Dismiss, Ex. C) (No. 2012-M-01061). By order signed on December 13, 2012, the Mississippi Supreme Court granted Petitioner leave to proceed in the trial court on his claim that his due process rights were violated when his indictment was amended after trial to charge him as an habitual offender. ( See id., Ex. E). On September 17, 2013, the circuit court dismissed the motion for postconviction relief. ( See id., Ex. F). According to the public docket entries of the Mississippi Supreme Court Clerk's Office, Petitioner did not appeal this decision. See http://courts.ms.gov/appellate_courts/generaldocket.html (search by name "Scotty Lyles" and select No. 2012-M-01061) (last visited May 14, 2014). Petitioner signed the instant federal habeas petition on January 29, 2014, and it was received in this Court on February 3, 2014.

On April 4, 2014, Respondent filed a Motion to Dismiss the instant action, arguing that the petition is untimely under 28 U.S.C. § 2244(d), and, in the alternative, that it is unexhausted. On May 14, 2014, Petitioner responded to the motion. This matter is ripe for review.

Legal Standard

The instant petition for writ of habeas corpus is subject to the statute of limitations of the Anti-Terrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 ("AEDPA"). Egerton v. Cockrell, 334 F.3d 433, 436 (5th Cir. 2003). The issue of whether Respondent's motion should be granted turns on the statue's limitation period, which provides:

(d)(1) A 1-year period of limitation shall apply to an application for a writ of habeas corpus by a person in custody pursuant to the judgment of a State court. The limitation period shall run from the latest of -
(A) the date on which the judgment became final by the conclusion of direct review or the expiration of the time for seeking such review;
(B) the date on which the impediment to filing an application created by State action in violation of the Constitution or the laws of the United States is removed, if the applicant was prevented from filing by such State action;
(C) the date on which the constitutional right asserted was initially recognized by the Supreme Court, if the right has been newly recognized by the Supreme Court and made retroactively applicable to cases on collateral review; or
(D) the date on which the factual predicate of the claim or claims presented could have been discovered through the exercise of due diligence.

28 U.S.C. § 2244(d)(1). The federal limitations period is tolled while a "properly filed application for State post-conviction or other collateral review" is pending. See 28 U.S.C. § 2244(d)(2). In "rare and exceptional circumstances, " the limitations period may be equitably tolled. ...


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