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Roberts v. Wilkinson Correctional Center Facility

United States District Court, N.D. Mississippi, Eastern Division

March 14, 2019

JIMMY LAMONT ROBERTS PETITIONER
v.
WILKINSON COUNTY CORRECTIONAL FACILITY RESPONDENT

          MEMORANDUM OPINION

          SHARION AYCOCK, U.S. DISTRICT JUDGE

         This matter comes before the court on the pro se petition of Jimmy Lamont Roberts for a writ of habeas corpus under 28 U.S.C. § 2254. The State has moved to dismiss the petition as untimely filed under 28 U.S.C. § 2244(d)(2). Mr. Roberts has not responded to the motion, and the deadline to do so has expired. The matter is ripe for resolution. For the reasons set forth below, the State's motion to dismiss will be granted and the instant petition for a writ of habeas corpus dismissed as untimely filed.

         Facts and Procedural Posture

          The instant case has a lengthy procedural history. On September 3, 2010, Jimmy Lamont Roberts pled guilty to statutory rape in the Circuit Court of Lowndes County, Mississippi, Cause No. 2008-351. See Exhibit A.[1] On September 3, 2010, the trial court entered its Sentencing Order, requiring Mr. Roberts to serve twenty (20) years in the custody of the Mississippi Department of Corrections (“MDOC”) and five years of post-release supervision after release from confinement. See Exhibit B.

         Mr. Roberts signed his first motion for post-conviction relief on October 3, 2010, [2] in Lowndes County Circuit Court, Cause No. 2010-0114-CV1. Exhibit C. In that motion, he challenged his lawyer's actions regarding parole, his plea, his competency and discovery. Id. He also alleged that he was denied due process and was unable to prepare a defense. Id. On October 25, 2010, Mr. Roberts filed another document, alleging problems with his plea, violation of his right to confront a witness and the victim, and racism of the trial judge and his attorney. Id. He also requested records and transcripts in this filing. Id. On November 19, 2010, the Lowndes County Circuit Court dismissed the motion without a hearing, holding that Mr. Roberts made “blanket accusations with no proof[.]” Exhibit D. Mr. Roberts did not appeal the trial court's November 19, 2010, order denying post-conviction relief. Exhibit E. This post-conviction motion was signed on October 3, 2010, and dismissed on November 19, 2010.

         Mr. Roberts signed his second motion for post-conviction relief on December 11, 2010, [3] in Lowndes County Circuit Court, Cause No. 2010-0114-CV1. Exhibit F. In that motion he raised claims of due process violations, issues with his plea, and lack of evidence. Id. He made an additional filing on December 30, 2010, alleging an involuntary plea, due process violations; he also requested his file from his attorney. Id. On February 23, 2011, the Lowndes County Circuit Court dismissed the motion without a hearing, finding that Roberts motion “raises issues not properly raised under § 99-39-1 et seq.” Exhibit G. The docket in Lowndes County Circuit Court Cause No. 2010-0114-CV1 reflects that Roberts did not appeal the trial court's February 23, 2011, order denying post-conviction relief. See Exhibit E.

         Mr. Roberts signed his third motion for post-conviction relief on August 22, 2011, which was filed on September 1, 2011, in Lowndes County Circuit Court, Cause No. 2010-0114-CV1. Exhibit H. This motion raised claims of ineffective assistance of counsel regarding the evidence and the plea, self-incrimination, and a request for records. Id. On November 30, 2011, the Lowndes County Circuit Court denied the motion, finding that Roberts “offered no specific facts as to how his counsel was ineffective, nor has he offered any proof that his counsel was ineffective.” Exhibit I. The trial court further found that Roberts “allegations do not meet the standards of ineffective assistance of counsel set by Strickland v. Washington, 466 U.S. 668.” Id. The docket in Lowndes County Circuit Court Cause No. 2010-0114-CV1 reflects that Roberts did not appeal the trial court's November 30, 2011 order. See Exhibit E.

         State Post-Conviction Motions Filed After the Federal Habeas Corpus Deadline Expired

         Mr. Roberts is not entitled to statutory tolling of the one-year limitations period under 28 U.S.C. § 2244(d)(2) during the pendency of his remaining state post-conviction motions, which were all filed after April 19, 2012, the deadline for him to seek federal habeas corpus relief.

         Mr. Roberts signed his fourth motion for post-conviction relief on March 11, 2014; it was filed on March 18, 2014, in Lowndes County Circuit Court, Cause No. 2010-0114-CV1. Exhibit J. This motion sought an order for the clerk to provide copies of all pertinent records and transcripts in his criminal matter. Id. On May 30, 2014, the Lowndes County Circuit Court denied the motion. Exhibit K. Mr. Roberts did not appeal the trial court's order denying post-conviction relief. See Exhibit E, Docket for Lowndes County Circuit Court Cause No. 2010-0114-CV1. This post-conviction motion was signed on March 11, 2014, and dismissed on May 30, 2014.

         On November 28, 2016, Mr. Roberts signed an “Application for Leave to Proceed in the Trial Court” and a “Motion for Post-Conviction Collateral Relief, ” which were filed with the Mississippi Supreme Court in Cause No. 2016-M-01701 on December 5, 2016. Exhibit L. This motion asserted claims of ineffective assistance of counsel, mental incompetence, and issues with his plea and sentence. Id. On February 15, 2017, the Mississippi Supreme Court dismissed this motion without prejudice for Roberts to file same in the trial court. Exhibit M.

         Mr. Roberts then signed another “Application for Leave to Proceed in the Trial Court” and “Motion for Post-Conviction Collateral Relief” on July 1, 2017, which was filed in Mississippi Supreme Court Cause No. 2016-M-01701 on July 5, 2017. Exhibit N. In this document, Mr. Roberts argued the same issues as those in the November 28, 2016 motion (see Exhibit L) but added claims that the trial judge was prejudiced against him. Exhibit N. On July 26, 2017, the Mississippi Supreme Court filed an Order dismissing the application without prejudice to Roberts' ability to file it in the trial court. Exhibit O.

         Mr. Roberts filed another motion for post-conviction relief on December 6, 2016, [4] in Lowndes County Circuit Court, Cause No. 2010-0114-CV1. Exhibit P. This motion asserted claims of civil rights violations, including sexual misconduct by the prison guards and inmates at East Mississippi Correctional Facility (EMCF), and a request for a transfer. Id. On February 24, 2017, the Lowndes County Circuit Court dismissed the motion without a hearing, finding that the claims asserted in Roberts's motion are “not properly raised under § 99-39-1 et seq., ” and that Roberts should proceed “through the Administrative Remedies Program at the Mississippi Department of Corrections before applying to the Circuit Court for relief.” Exhibit Q. The docket in Lowndes County Circuit Court Cause No. 2010-0114-CV1 reflects that Mr. Roberts did not appeal the trial court's order. See Exhibit E. This post-conviction motion was signed on December 6, 2016, and dismissed on February 24, 2017.

         Roberts filed another motion for post-conviction relief on August 20, 2017, [5] in Lowndes County Circuit Court, Cause No. 2010-0114-CV1. Exhibit R. This motion again asserted complaints regarding EMCF and issues with his confinement, including assertions that the officers were discriminating against him, that he was being sexually assaulted, and that he could not get blood work for tests or go to the hospital for lab work . Id. On August 31, 2017, the Lowndes County Circuit Court dismissed the motion without a hearing, finding that the allegations did not concern Mr. Roberts' conviction and thus were not properly raised under Miss. Code Ann. ยง ...


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