JOSHUA WILLIAMS A/K/A JOSHUA DEVON WILLIAMS A/K/A JOSHUA D. WILLIAMS A/K/A JOSH WILLIAMS APPELLANT
STATE OF MISSISSIPPI APPELLEE
OF JUDGMENT: 07/08/2015
DAVIS COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT HON. ANTHONY ALAN MOZINGO TRIAL
ATTORNEY FOR APPELLANT: JOSHUA WILLIAMS (PRO SE)
ATTORNEY FOR APPELLEE: OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL BY:
ABBIE EASON KOONCE
Joshua Williams appeals the Jefferson Davis County Circuit
Court's denial of his petition for postconviction relief
(PCR). On appeal, Williams asserts the following issues: (1)
whether he was competent to enter valid guilty pleas; (2)
whether he was denied effective assistance of counsel; and
(3) whether he was unlawfully convicted of manslaughter.
Finding no error, we affirm.
On March 14, 2012, a Jefferson Davis County grand jury
indicted Williams and his two co-indictees for one count of
capital murder. See Miss. Code Ann. §
97-3-19(2)(e) (Rev. 2006). At the plea hearing on July 23,
2013, the State moved to reduce Williams's capital-murder
charge to manslaughter and armed robbery. See Miss.
Code Ann. § 97-3-35 (Rev. 2006); Miss. Code Ann. §
97-3-79 (Rev. 2006). Following a plea colloquy at the July
23, 2013 hearing, the circuit court accepted Williams's
guilty pleas to the armed-robbery and manslaughter charges.
The circuit court subsequently sentenced Williams to twenty
years for the manslaughter conviction and a consecutive
ten-year term for the armed-robbery conviction, with both
sentences to be served in the custody of the Mississippi
Department of Corrections.
Williams filed an unsuccessful motion to reconsider his
sentences. He then filed a PCR petition and an amendment of
his PCR claims, in which he asserted several additional
assignments of error. After reviewing Williams's PCR
petition, as well as "all files, records, transcripts,
and correspondence pertaining to the judgment under attack[,
]" the circuit court filed an order on July 14, 2015,
denying Williams's PCR petition and finding no merit to
each of his asserted claims. Aggrieved by the circuit
court's judgment, Williams appeals.
"When reviewing a circuit court's denial or
dismissal of a PCR motion, we will reverse the judgment of
the circuit court only if its factual findings are clearly
erroneous; however, we review the circuit court's legal
conclusions under a de novo standard of review."
Boyd v. State, 65 So.3d 358, 360 (¶10) (Miss.
Ct. App. 2011).
Whether Williams was competent to enter valid guilty
Williams asserts that the circuit court erred by not
conducting a hearing to determine whether he was competent at
the time he entered his guilty pleas. He further claims that,
due to a history of mental-health issues, his guilty pleas
were not entered voluntarily, knowingly, and intelligently.