OF JUDGMENT: 08/31/2018
CIRCUIT COURT HON. WILLIAM E. CHAPMAN III COURT TRIAL JUDGE
BARNES, C.J., McDONALD AND C. WILSON, JJ.
On January 16, 1987, David Jackson was indicted for burglary
of an inhabited dwelling at night while armed with a deadly
weapon. Jackson signed a petition to enter a guilty plea on
February 27, 1987, and the Madison County Circuit Court
sentenced him to eight years in the custody of the
Mississippi Department of Corrections (MDOC). Jackson served
his sentence and was released from custody. The circuit court
subsequently convicted Jackson for possession of cocaine with
intent to distribute in 1998 and sentenced him to serve
thirty years in the MDOC's custody as a habitual
offender. The 1987 burglary conviction was used as a basis
for his habitual-offender status.
Jackson filed a motion for post-conviction relief (PCR) with
the circuit court on August 24, 2018, challenging his 1987
burglary conviction from thirty years earlier. Asserting that
his PCR motion was excepted from any procedural bars, Jackson
alleged the following errors: (1) the denial of his right to
counsel; (2) involuntary guilty plea; (3) no factual basis
for his guilty plea; (4) ineffective assistance of counsel;
and (5) insufficient indictment.
The circuit court dismissed the motion, finding Jackson
lacked standing to bring his motion because he was no longer
in custody under his 1987 burglary conviction and sentence.
We find no error on appeal and affirm.
This Court reviews a circuit court's dismissal of a PCR
motion for abuse of discretion. Purvis v. State, 240
So.3d 468, 470 (¶7) (Miss. Ct. App. 2017). A court's
factual findings will not be disturbed "unless they are
clearly erroneous." Id. "Questions of law
are reviewed de novo." Id.
Before addressing the merits of Jackson's claims,
"[t]he first issue we must address is whether the trial
court had jurisdiction to hear the motion[. . . .]"
Craft v. State, 966 So.2d 856, 857 (¶5) (Miss.
Ct. App. 2007). Mississippi Code Annotated section 99-39-5
provides that "[a]ny person sentenced by a court of
record of the State of Mississippi, including a person
currently incarcerated, civilly committed, on parole or
probation . . . may file a motion to vacate, set aside or
correct the judgment or sentence[. . . .]" This language
is taken from the 2009 amendment to the statute. Prior to the
amendment, the statute provided that eligibility to file a
PCR motion extended only those persons "in custody"
in Mississippi. This Court has determined that the amended
language in section 99-39-5 does not include those persons
released from custody and no longer suffering the effects of
In Wilson v. State, 76 So.3d 733, 735 (¶11)
(Miss. Ct. App. 2011), this Court held that a petitioner who
is "is no longer 'serving time under the sentence he
complains of'" lacks standing to bring a PCR motion.
(Quoting Wilson v. State, 990 So.2d 828, 830
(¶6) (Miss. Ct. App. 2008)). In that case, as here, the
petitioner had completed the sentence that he was challenging
but the prior conviction had been used as a basis for
habitual-offender status for a subsequent conviction. In
Brown v. State, 90 So.3d 645 (Miss. Ct. App. 2012),
we addressed whether a petitioner incarcerated in federal
jurisdiction, who had been released from MDOC custody, had
standing to file a PCR motion, holding:
Here, Brown invites us to widen the PCR statute's net by
liberally interpreting [section 99-39-5] to allow PCR
eligibility for movants who have served time in the custody
of the MDOC but who have either been permanently released
from the MDOC or whose custody is no longer under the control
of the State of Mississippi at the time of the PCR
motions' filing. We decline Brown's invitation since
such an expansion would eviscerate the very purpose of the
PCR statute's enactment.
See also Birmingham v. State, 159 So.3d 597, 599
(¶¶8-9) (Miss. Ct. App. 2014) (holding that because
the petitioner's sentence had expired years earlier, he
lacked standing to file a PCR motion, and ...