CLAYTON PAUL BATEMAN A/K/A CLAYTON P. BATEMAN A/K/A CLAYTON BATEMAN, APPELLANT
STATE OF MISSISSIPPI, APPELLEE
OF JUDGMENT: 12/16/2016
HARRISON COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT, FIRST JUDICIAL DISTRICT HON.
LAWRENCE PAUL BOURGEOIS JR., JUDGE
ATTORNEY FOR APPELLANT: CLAYTON PAUL BATEMAN (PRO SE)
ATTORNEY FOR APPELLEE: OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL BY:
ALICIA MARIE AINSWORTH
GRIFFIS, P.J., BARNES AND GREENLEE, JJ.
Clayton Bateman, appearing pro se, appeals the Harrison
County Circuit Court's dismissal of his "Motion for
Relief from Judgment" for lack of jurisdiction. Finding
no error, we affirm.
OF FACTS AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
In January 2010, Bateman was indicted for three counts of
sexual battery and two counts of lustful touching of a child.
The victims were his two daughters, aged eight and nine. In
February 2011, Bateman, appearing pro se, filed a
"Petition for Habeas Corpus in PreConviction,"
claiming he was illegally imprisoned and requesting
"immediate release." The petition was filed after
his indictment but approximately one year before his trial.
Bateman argued that the circuit court, or any court within
the State, lacked jurisdiction over his case because the
boundaries of the State of Mississippi had allegedly been
dissolved by constitutional amendment in 1990,  and the
court's jurisdiction is dependent upon these
constitutional boundaries. He claimed the State took his
liberty by "fraud." Additionally, Bateman alleged
that his indictment was void from lack of jurisdiction, and
the court's officers, including the circuit-court judge,
were illegitimate "agents of the state" because
they had not provided him with their oaths of
office. Finally, he requested copies of
transcripts of his proceedings, appointment of counsel, and
an evidentiary hearing on his petition.
On February 7, 2012, the day before trial commenced, a
hearing was held on Bateman's habeas-corpus petition, as
well as other pro-se pretrial motions he had
filed. The circuit court denied his petition and
motions from the bench. Bateman proceeded to trial, where a
jury convicted him of two counts of sexual battery and two
counts of touching of a child for lustful purposes. Bateman
was sentenced to thirty years for each count of sexual
battery, to run concurrently. He was sentenced to fifteen
years for each count of touching of a child for lustful
purposes, to run consecutively to each other, and
concurrently with the two counts of sexual battery, all in
the custody of the Mississippi Department of Corrections.
Bateman appealed, and the Mississippi Supreme Court affirmed
his convictions and sentences in Bateman v. State,
125 So.3d 616 (Miss. 2013).
On February 16, 2016, approximately four years after his
conviction, Bateman filed a "Motion for Relief from
Judgment" under Mississippi Rule of Civil Procedure
60(b)(4) and (6). In the motion, Bateman reiterated and
elaborated the arguments of his habeas-corpus petition,
claiming that the judgment (presumably of conviction) was
void and the State committed a fraud upon the court because
the court lacked jurisdiction. The circuit court treated the
motion as one for post-conviction relief (PCR) under the
Mississippi Uniform Post-Conviction Collateral Relief Act
(UPCCRA) of Mississippi Code Annotated section 99-39-1
through -29 (Rev. 2015). The circuit court ruled that it
lacked jurisdiction to hear the motion because, under
post-conviction relief procedures, Bateman failed to request
permission from the Mississippi Supreme Court to file the
motion under section 99-39-7. Bateman timely appealed.
This Court reviews the circuit court's denial or
dismissal of a PCR motion for abuse of discretion. The
circuit court's findings will only be disturbed if they
are clearly erroneous. Doss v. State, 19 So.3d 690,