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Manning v. State

Supreme Court of Mississippi, En Banc

February 12, 2015

WILLIE JEROME MANNING a/k/a FLY
v.
STATE OF MISSISSIPPI

COURT FROM WHICH APPEALED: OKTIBBEHA COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT. DATE OF JUDGMENT: 05/21/2013. TRIAL JUDGE: HON. LEE J. HOWARD.

FOR APPELLANT: DAVID PAUL VOISIN, ROBERT S. MINK.

FOR APPELLEE: OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL, BY: MELANIE DOTSON THOMAS, MARVIN L. WHITE, JR.

RANDOLPH, PRESIDING JUSTICE. WALLER, C.J., DICKINSON, P.J., LAMAR, KITCHENS AND COLEMAN, JJ., CONCUR. KING, J., CONCURS IN RESULT ONLY WITHOUT SEPARATE WRITTEN OPINION. CHANDLER, J., DISSENTS WITH SEPARATE WRITTEN OPINION JOINED BY PIERCE, J.

OPINION

Page 303

RANDOLPH, PRESIDING JUSTICE.

¶1. Willie Manning is appealing the trial court's order denying him post-conviction relief. This appeal stems from Manning's conviction of brutally murdering two elderly women in Starkville, Mississippi. The only witness to testify that he saw Manning entering the women's apartment shortly before their bodies were discovered was Kevin Lucious, a convict serving two life sentences without parole in Missouri. No witness testified to seeing Manning leave the apartment. A more complete

Page 304

statement of the underlying facts can be found in Manning's failed direct appeal, Manning v. State, 735 So.2d 323 (Miss. 1999). Considerable evidence was presented to the jury, which found Manning guilty, and Manning was sentenced to death. This Court affirmed Manning's convictions and sentences.

¶2. Manning filed a petition for post-conviction relief (PCR). This Court granted Manning leave to proceed with post-conviction proceedings on three grounds: withheld evidence, Kevin Lucious's testimony, and ineffective assistance of counsel related to those two claims. Manning v. State, 884 So.2d 717 (Miss. 2004). The trial court denied Manning relief, and Manning appeals from that order.

ISSUES

¶3. On appeal from the trial court's denial of post-conviction relief, Manning raises the following issues:

I. The State violated Manning's due process rights by failing to provide favorable, material evidence, the cumulative effect of which puts the case in a different light and undermines confidence in the verdict.
II. The State violated Manning's due process rights through its knowing use of false testimony.
III. Manning was denied his right to the effective assistance of counsel guaranteed by the Sixth and Fourteenth Amendments and the Mississippi Constitution.
IV. Manning is entitled to post-conviction relief due to the cumulative effect of these errors.
V. Manning was denied his right to due process of law guaranteed by the Federal and State Constitutions due to the failure to allow him to inspect law enforcement files ...

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