OF JUDGMENT: 05/10/2016
FROM WHICH APPEALED: MARION COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT HON. ANTHONY
ALAN MOZINGO TRIAL JUDGE.
ATTORNEY FOR APPELLANT: HERMAN BARNES (PRO SE).
ATTORNEYS FOR APPELLEE: OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL BY:
DARRELL CLAYTON BAUGHN ANTHONY LOUIS SCHMIDT JR.
LEE, C.J., BARNES AND CARLTON, JJ.
Herman Barnes filed a motion for postconviction relief (PCR)
in the Marion County Circuit Court seeking relief from the
Mississippi State Parole Board's decision to review his
parole eligibility after four years, instead of once every
year. The circuit court dismissed Barnes's PCR motion for
lack of jurisdiction. Barnes filed a motion for
reconsideration, which the circuit court subsequently denied.
Barnes now appeals, claiming that the Parole Board's
decision violates Mississippi Code Annotated section
47-7-18(6) (Rev. 2015). Finding no error, we affirm the
circuit court's dismissal of Barnes's PCR motion.
On September 3, 1983, a Marion County jury convicted Barnes
of capital murder, and the circuit court sentenced him to
life in the custody of the Mississippi Department of
Corrections (MDOC). On November 14, 1983, a Marion County
jury convicted Barnes of aggravated assault on a
law-enforcement officer, and the circuit court sentenced
Barnes to serve five years in the custody of the MDOC. Then,
on March 2, 1984, a Marion County jury convicted Barnes of an
additional count of capital murder. The circuit court sentenced
Barnes to a consecutive life term, with instructions that he
serve his sentences in the following order:
[Barnes] is to begin serving his sentence [for the 1984
capital-murder conviction] after the completion of his
sentence imposed [for aggravated assault of a law-enforcement
officer, . . .] and the [five-year] sentence [for aggravated
assault of a law-enforcement officer] is to begin to run
consecutive and after the completion of his sentence [for the
1983 capital-murder conviction].
is currently an inmate at the Central Mississippi
During sentencing, the trial court set November 12, 2003, as
Barnes's initial parole date. The record reflects that
the Parole Board denied Barnes parole on that date, as well
as on two additional dates. The record shows that following
Barnes's most recent denial of parole on March 9, 2016,
the Parole Board setoff Barnes's next parole-eligibility
hearing for four years.
On April 26, 2016, Barnes filed his PCR motion, alleging that
he is entitled to a parole hearing at least "once per
year"; therefore, Barnes argues the Parole Board
possessed no authority to impose a four-year setoff. On May
11, 2016, the circuit court dismissed Barnes's PCR motion
for lack of jurisdiction. The circuit court explained:
Barnes complains of the denial of parole. While decisions
concerning parole eligibility may fall under the [Mississippi
Uniform Post Conviction Collateral Relief Act (UPCCRA)],
the denial of parole does not. Miss. Code Ann. §
99-39-5; see Evans v. State, [188 So.3d ...