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House v. Hall

Court of Appeals of Mississippi

July 24, 2018

EDWARD HOUSE A/K/A EDWARD EARL HOUSE APPELLANT
v.
PELICIA HALL AND WARDEN FRANK SHAW APPELLEES

          DATE OF JUDGMENT: 06/28/2017

          COURT FROM WHICH APPEALED: LAUDERDALE COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT HON. JUSTIN MILLER COBB JUDGE

          EDWARD HOUSE (PRO SE) ATTORNEY FOR APPELLANT

          OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL DARRELL CLAYTON BAUGHN ATTORNEY FOR APPELLEES

          BEFORE GRIFFIS, P.J., BARNES AND GREENLEE, JJ.

          BARNES, J.,

         ¶1. The Lauderdale County Circuit Court dismissed Edward House's motion for post- conviction relief (PCR), determining that it lacked jurisdiction because it was not the county where House's convictions had originated. Finding the PCR motion was not properly filed in Lauderdale County, we affirm the circuit court's judgment of dismissal.

         FACTS AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY

         ¶2. On April 7, 1993, House pleaded guilty to manslaughter and robbery with a deadly weapon in Panola County Circuit Court. For the robbery conviction, he was sentenced to ten years in the custody of the Mississippi Department of Corrections (MDOC) without eligibility for "parole, probation, good time, earned time, early release or any other administrative reduction in sentence." He was sentenced to twenty years for the manslaughter conviction, with the sentence to run consecutively to the sentence imposed for robbery.

         ¶3. On October 20, 2004, House entered a guilty plea in Sunflower County Circuit Court to conspiracy and taking contraband onto penitentiary grounds. The court ordered House to serve five years for the conspiracy conviction, with one year to serve, four years of post-release supervision (PRS), and a $3, 000 fine. For taking contraband onto penitentiary grounds, he was sentenced to three years without eligibility for probation, parole, suspension of sentence, or earned time. The sentence was to run consecutively to the conspiracy sentence, as well as any other sentence currently being served.

         ¶4. Subsequently, House pleaded guilty to aggravated assault in Sunflower County Circuit Court on February 10, 2010, and he was sentenced to twenty years in the custody of the MDOC, with fifteen years to serve and five years on PRS. This sentence was to run concurrently with his 1993 Panola County sentences.

         ¶5. On December 7, 2011, House filed a request through the MDOC's Administrative Remedy Program (ARP), asserting the MDOC had erred in the computation of his sentences. Denying his request, the MDOC responded that House's most recent sentence for aggravated assault was to run concurrently with his other sentences "beginning the date the crime was committed"-June 25, 2007. It also noted that while House was serving his three-year sentence for contraband, he was removed from trusty status, but he would be reinstated to trusty status upon completion of that sentence. Aggrieved, House filed a second-step request, which the MDOC denied citing the same reasoning. House filed a habeas corpus appeal with the Mississippi Supreme Court on July 5, 2012. Because House had not appealed the MDOC's decision to the circuit court, the Mississippi Supreme Court dismissed the appeal for lack of jurisdiction.

         ¶6. Years later, on February 22, 2016, House filed another first-step ARP request, again arguing that his sentences were not computed correctly and claiming that he had completed his sentences. The MDOC responded that his file "ha[d] been reviewed and it ha[d] been determined that [his] file [was] correct." Unsatisfied with the response, House filed a second-step request alleging he should be eligible for parole. The MDOC denied his request, stating that although he had been eligible for parole on the manslaughter offense, the other charges were not parole-eligible, and his "current earliest eligibility date of release would be for [earned release supervision] and that date, as of today is 11/03/2017." On August 19, 2016, House filed another ARP-this time arguing that the MDOC made him serve his three-year sentence for contraband on prison grounds twice; thus, depriving him of trusty time from August 2013 to August 2016.

         ¶7. On October 17, 2016, House filed a PCR motion (Cause No. 2016-0294) in Sunflower County Circuit Court, reiterating his argument from his August 19, 2016 ARP request. Because House's motion was an appeal from the MDOC's ARP decision, Sunflower County found it had no jurisdiction over the matter and remanded the case to Lauderdale County where House was incarcerated. The record does not indicate any action taken by Lauderdale County Circuit Court with regard to this PCR motion. On February 24, 2017, House filed an interlocutory appeal of the Sunflower County's order to the supreme court (Cause No. 2017-M-252), asserting the action was a PCR because it involves "an issue of the Petitioner being incarcerated after he has completed all of his sentences which is an issue that falls squarely under [Mississippi Code Annotated section] ...


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