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Jones v. State

United States District Court, E.D. Arkansas, Eastern Division

June 3, 2016

EDWARD JONES, Plaintiff,
v.
STATE OF ARKANSAS, et al., Defendants.

          RECOMMENDED DISPOSITION

          BETH DEERE, Magistrate Judge.

         I. Procedures for Filing Objections:

         This Recommended Disposition ("Recommendation") has been sent to Judge James M. Moody Jr. You may file written objections to this Recommendation. If you file objections, they must be specific and must include the factual or legal basis for your objection. Your objections must be received in the office of the United States District Court Clerk within fourteen (14) days of this Recommendation.

         If no objections are filed, Judge Moody can adopt this Recommendation without independently reviewing the record. By not objecting, you may also waive any right to appeal questions of fact.

         II. Background:

         Plaintiff Edward Jones filed this case pro se.[1] (Docket entry #2) In his original complaint, Mr. Jones sued the State of Arkansas as the only Defendant. His complaint appeared to be an appeal of an order issued by the Clerk of the Arkansas Supreme Court. (#2)

         Mr. Jones filed an amended complaint naming deputy prosecuting attorney Todd H. Murray, deputy prosecuting attorney Blake Spears, prosecuting attorney Fletcher Long Jr., attorney Paul N. Ford, attorney Bryce D. Cook, and Arkansas Supreme Court Clerk Stacey Pectol as Defendants. (#11) Mr. Jones's amended complaint was incoherent, but this Court gave him an opportunity to file a second amended complaint if he wished to proceed. (#18)

         Mr. Jones filed a second amended complaint naming the State of Arkansas, deputy prosecuting attorney Todd H. Murray, deputy prosecuting attorney Blake Spears, prosecuting attorney Fletcher Long, Jr., and Arkansas Supreme Court Clerk Stacey Pectol as Defendants. (#21) In the second amended complaint, Mr. Jones abandoned whatever claims he had previously attempted to state against attorneys Paul N. Ford and Bryce D. Cook. (#21)

         Mr. Jones has now filed a supplemental second amended complaint without leave of the Court. (#32) In the supplemental second amended complaint, Mr. Jones again names Paul N. Ford as a Defendant. Mr. Jones states that he did not add Mr. Cook as a defendant because Mr. Cook "asked not to be a part of the lawsuit." (#32, p. 2) To date, the State of Arkansas is the only Defendant on which this Court has ordered service. (#4)

         The State of Arkansas has filed a motion to dismiss. (#22) Mr. Ford and Mr. Cook have filed multiple motions to dismiss. (#25 and #29) For reasons explained below, Judge Moody should GRANT the State of Arkansas's motion to dismiss, as well as Mr. Ford's motions to dismiss. (#25 and #29) Because Mr. Jones abandoned whatever claims he attempted to raise against Mr. Cook, Judge Moody should DENY his motions (#25 and #29) as moot. Judge Moody should also dismiss the remaining Defendants and claims and close the case.

         III. Discussion:

         This case concerns title to approximately 120 acres of land in Lee County, Arkansas. (#21, pp. 11-13) It appears that the land was owned by Clarence Jones and Linda Jones of Forrest City, Arkansas.

         Plaintiff Edward Jones apparently had power-of-attorney over his father's affairs. While his father bore the name "Clarence Jones, " he was not the Forrest City Clarence Jones who owned an interest in the 120 acres at issue; rather, this Clarence Jones lived in Little Rock, Arkansas and held no ownership interest in the Lee County acreage.

         In April of 2014, Edward Jones took steps to transfer title to some of the Lee County land from "Clarence Jones" to himself. To that end, Edward Jones filed a warranty deed, assessed and paid taxes on the land, and instructed the tenant farmer who had farmed the land since the 1960s to ...


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