Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Joiner v. State

Court of Appeals of Mississippi

February 13, 2018

CHRISTOPHER ALLEN JOINER A/K/A CHRISTOPHER JOINER A/K/A CHRISTOPHER A. JOINER A/K/A CHRIS JOINER APPELLANT
v.
STATE OF MISSISSIPPI APPELLEE

          DATE OF JUDGMENT: 10/04/2016

         JACKSON COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT HON. DALE HARKEY TRIAL JUDGE

          ATTORNEY FOR APPELLANT: OFFICE OF STATE PUBLIC DEFENDER BY: GEORGE T. HOLMES.

          ATTORNEY FOR APPELLEE: OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL BY: ABBIE EASON KOONCE.

          BEFORE GRIFFIS, P.J., WESTBROOKS AND TINDELL, JJ.

          GRIFFIS, P.J.

         ¶1. Christopher Allen Joiner appeals his convictions for three counts of armed robbery under Mississippi Code Annotated section 97-7-79(2) (Rev. 2014). He argues that the trial court improperly denied his request for a mental evaluation to determine whether he was fit to stand trial. We find no error and affirm.

         FACTS AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY

         ¶2. On February 1, 2016, after he was indicted, Joiner filed a motion to proceed pro se. In the motion, Joiner stated that he had asked his first appointed attorney for a psychological evaluation. Joiner provided no other basis, reasoning, or explanation for such an evaluation. Then on May 24, 2016, five months before his trial, Joiner was appointed new trial counsel.

         ¶3. Joiner made no further mention of his request for a psychological evaluation to his new attorney or to the judge in his numerous pretrial court appearances. Then Joiner was offered a plea deal. Joiner discussed the details of his case and the plea with his attorney, and then with the judge. Nevertheless, Joiner rejected the plea offer and decided to go to trial.

         ¶4. The trial began on October 3, 2016. At trial, Joiner mentioned his request for a psychological evaluation to his new attorney and subsequently to the judge. This was the first time Joiner had mentioned it since the motion to proceed pro se. After a discussion between Joiner, his attorney, and the judge, the motion for a psychological evaluation was denied.

         ¶5. The jury found Joiner guilty of all three armed-robbery counts. He was sentenced to life in the custody of the Mississippi Department of Corrections on each count, with the sentences in Counts II and III to run concurrently with each other and consecutively to the sentence imposed in Count I. Joiner filed a motion for a new trial and raised the issue of the psychological evaluation. The court denied the motion, and Joiner has timely appealed.

         STANDARD OF REVIEW

         ¶6. Constitutional due process requires that a person accused of a crime may only be tried if he is legally competent. Lokos v. Capps, 625 F.2d 1258, 1261 (5th Cir. 1980). Uniform Rule of Circuit and County Court 9.06 requires a trial court to order a defendant to undergo a mental examination if, upon "its own motion or upon motion of an attorney, [the trial court] has reasonable ground to believe that the defendant is incompetent to stand trial[.]"[1] The determination of whether a trial court has a "reasonable ground" to suspect mental incompetency is within the discretion of the trial court. Harden v. State, 59 So.3d 594, 601 (ΒΆ14) (Miss. 2011). This discretion is broad in determining whether to ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.