OF JUDGMENT: 02/05/2018
FROM WHICH APPEALED: LAFAYETTE COUNTY CHANCERY COURT TRIAL
JUDGE: HON. H.J. DAVIDSON JR.
ATTORNEY FOR APPELLANT: PERRY EDWARD LITTLEFIELD (PRO SE)
ATTORNEYS FOR APPELLEE: JAMES ROGER FRANKS JR. WILLIAM RUFUS
WHEELER JR. TIFFANY KAIL PHARR
BARNES, C.J., TINDELL AND McCARTY, JJ.
Perry Edward "Eddie" Littlefield appeals the
opinion and final judgment of the Lafayette County Chancery
Court entered on February 5, 2018, which granted a divorce in
favor of Brooke Dixon Littlefield on the ground of habitual
cruel and inhuman treatment. Eddie also challenges the
chancellor's equitable division of the couple's
marital property following Brooke's waiver of certain
rights to marital property and the chancellor's dismissal
of his counterclaim with prejudice. Finding no error, we
affirm the chancellor's judgment of divorce and division
of the property. We also affirm the chancellor's
dismissal of Eddie's counterclaim with prejudice.
Eddie and Brooke were married in Lafayette County,
Mississippi on May 3, 2012, until their separation on or
about May 11 or 12, 2017. The couple had no children from the
marriage and very little personal property to divide. On May
18, 2017, Brooke filed her complaint for divorce on the
ground of habitual cruel and inhuman treatment or, in the
alternative, for irreconcilable differences, and Eddie filed
his answer and counterclaim for divorce on the ground of
adultery. The parties filed an agreed scheduling order,
setting deadlines for all dispositive and pre-trial motions
and setting the divorce trial for November 13, 2017. On
November 9, 2017, four days before trial, Eddie filed a
motion to amend his counterclaim, requesting that the
chancellor dismiss his claim for divorce on the ground of
adultery. The chancellor denied this motion as untimely.
Divorce proceedings occurred on November 13, 2017, and
January 8, 2018. The chancellor heard testimony from several
witnesses, including Eddie, Brooke, and Brooke's mother,
Jean Dixon, and was provided with text messages exchanged
between Eddie and Brooke. On February 5, 2018, the chancellor
entered his opinion and final judgment, finding Brooke's
testimony to be credible and sufficiently corroborated by
other evidence. The chancellor also noted Eddie's
extremely disruptive and antagonistic behavior during the
divorce proceedings. In his opinion and final judgment, the
chancellor granted a divorce in favor of Brooke on the ground
of habitual cruel and inhuman treatment and dismissed
Eddie's counterclaim for divorce based upon adultery with
The chancellor also found that the parties acquired most of
their debts and personal property during the marriage.
Because Brooke waived her right to most of the marital and
disputed property, the chancellor awarded this property to
Eddie. Brooke was awarded all remaining property, including a
2007 Infiniti, while Eddie was awarded the couple's
Nissan Xterra. The chancellor also denied Eddie's request
for alimony and for Brooke to bear responsibility for the
remainder of his student loans. Aggrieved by this judgment,
Eddie now timely appeals.
We apply a limited standard of review when examining a
chancellor's decision in domestic-relations matters.
Williams v. Williams, 224 So.3d 1282, 1284 (¶5)
(Miss. Ct. App. 2017). "Chancellors are afforded wide
latitude in fashioning equitable remedies in
domestic-relations matters, and their decisions will not be
reversed if the findings of fact are supported by substantial
credible evidence in the record." Henderson v.
Henderson, 757 So.2d 285, 289 (¶19) (Miss. 2000).
We review the facts of a divorce decree "in a light most
favorable to the appellee," and unless the
chancellor's judgment was manifestly wrong, clearly
erroneous, or based on an erroneous legal standard, the
judgment should stand. Fisher v. Fisher, 771 So.2d
364, 367 (¶8) (Miss. 2000).
When reviewing chancellor's judgment of property
division, we are required "to ensure that the chancellor
followed the appropriate standards and did not abuse his
discretion." Wells v. Wells, 800 So.2d 1239,
1243 (¶8) (Miss. Ct. App. 2001). We also review the
chancellor's decision to deny Eddie's motion to amend
his counterclaim ...