APPEAL FROM THE ASHLEY COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT [NO.
02CR-69-4717] HONORABLE SAM POPE, JUDGE AFFIRMED.
Joe Mitchell, pro se appellant.
Rutledge, Att'y Gen., by: Karen Virginia Wallace,
Ass't Att'y Gen., for appellee.
1969, appellant Bobby Joe Mitchell entered a plea of guilty
to first-degree murder and was sentenced by a jury to life
imprisonment. No appeal was taken.
March 24, 1975, Mitchell filed a pro se petition for
postconviction relief pursuant to Arkansas Rule of Criminal
Procedure 1, which was Arkansas's postconviction remedy
in effect at the time the judgment of conviction was
entered. The Rule 1 petition was denied in 1976,
and on appeal, this court reversed and remanded the matter to
the trial court for an evidentiary hearing because the trial
court's order did not conclusively show that the petition
was without merit. Mitchell v. State, CR-78-31 (Ark.
June 19, 1978) (unpublished). The trial court subsequently
held a hearing after which it again denied relief. We
affirmed the order. Mitchell v. State, 271 Ark. 512,
609 S.W.2d 333 (1980).
2015, Mitchell filed in the trial court a pro se petition for
writ of error coram nobis, for correction of sentence, and
for declaratory judgment. The trial court treated the
petition as one for a writ of error coram nobis and denied it
on December 15, 2015. Mitchell then filed on December 18,
2015, a "motion for new trial, " seeking
reconsideration of his petition because some facts in the
order were alleged to be incorrect. The trial court issued an
order in response to the motion in which it again denied the
relief sought in the petition and amended the findings to
correct any errors. Mitchell brings this appeal.
petition, Mitchell alleged that he was not afforded effective
assistance of counsel and that the sentence of life
imprisonment was illegal and illegally imposed because
counsel did not represent him competently, and the evidence
was insufficient to sustain the judgment. The trial court
correctly noted that Mitchell had already raised claims of
ineffective assistance of counsel in his Rule 1 petition.
Under the Rule, all grounds for relief under the Rule are
required to be raised in the original petition or an
amendment to the original petition; a second petition is not
allowed. Winberry v. State, 256 Ark. 65, 505 S.W.2d
497 (1974); Bailey v. State, 254 Ark. 628, 495
S.W.2d 150 (1973).
brief in this appeal, Mitchell includes statements and claims
that were not a part of his petition or the motion that were
ruled on by the trial court. Because an appeal from an order
denying postconviction relief is the review of the decision
made by the trial court based on the pleading or pleadings
before it, it is axiomatic that an appellant is limited to
the scope and nature of his arguments below. He cannot raise
new arguments on appeal or add factual substantiation to the
allegations made below. Ward v. State, 2015 Ark.
325, at 8, 469 S.W.3d 350, 355, reh'g denied,
(Mar. 31, 2016). Accordingly, this court will consider only
those issues raised on appeal that were ruled on below.
standard of review of an order entered by the trial court on
a petition for writ of error coram nobis is whether the trial
court abused its discretion in granting or denying the writ.
Newman v. State, 2014 Ark. 7. An abuse of
discretion occurs when the court acts arbitrarily or
groundlessly. Nelson v. State, 2014 Ark. 91, 431
S.W.3d 852. The trial court's findings of fact
on which it bases its decision to grant or deny the petition
for writ of error coram nobis will not be reversed on appeal
unless they are clearly erroneous or clearly against the
preponderance of the evidence. Newman, 2014 Ark. 7.
There is no abuse of discretion in the denial of
error-coram-nobis relief when the claims in the petition were
groundless. Nelson, 2014 Ark. 91, 431 S.W.3d 852.
of error coram nobis is an extraordinarily rare remedy.
State v. Larimore, 341 Ark. 397, 17 S.W.3d 87
(2000). Coram-nobis proceedings are attended by a strong
presumption that the judgment of conviction is valid.
Id. The function of the writ is to secure relief
from a judgment rendered while there existed some fact that
would have prevented its rendition if it had been known to
the trial court and which, through no negligence or fault of
the defendant, was not brought forward before rendition of
the judgment. Newman v. State, 2009 Ark. 539, 354
S.W.3d 61. The petitioner has the burden of demonstrating a
fundamental error of fact extrinsic to the record.
Roberts v. State, 2013 Ark. 56, 425 S.W.3d 771.
writ is allowed only under compelling circumstances to
achieve justice and to address errors of the most fundamental
nature. Id. A writ of error coram nobis is available
for addressing certain errors that are found in one of four
categories: (1) insanity at the time of trial, (2) a coerced
guilty plea, (3) material evidence withheld by the
prosecutor, or (4) a third-party confession to the crime
during the time between conviction and appeal. Howard v.
State, 2012 Ark. 177, 403 S.W.3d 38. This court has
repeatedly held that ineffective-assistance-of-counsel claims
are not cognizable in error-coram-nobis proceedings and that
such proceedings are not a substitute for raising
ineffective-assistance-of-counsel claims under the
postconviction rule applicable to the petitioner's case.
See White v. State, 2015 Ark. 151, at 4-5, 460
S.W.3d 285, 288; see also Williams v. State, 2016
Ark. 92, at 3, 485 S.W.3d 254, 256 (per curiam).
argues on appeal that the trial court erred in considering
his claims as allegations of ineffective assistance of
counsel because he "clearly alleged that his guilty plea
was coerced." The argument fails because the claims were
couched in terms of counsel's failure to render competent
representation, and Mitchell's petition for writ of error
coram nobis was not a substitute for raising the claims under
Rule 1. See State v. Tejeda-Acosta, 2013Ark. 217, at
5, 427 S.W.3d 673, 676. Moreover, even if Mitchell's
allegations could be interpreted as claims of a coerced
guilty plea, all the information was known to Mitchell at the
time he entered the plea and could have been raised at that
time. See Wright v. State, 2014Ark. 25 (per curiam).
Also, the allegations did not demonstrate coercion of the
sort recognized by this court in a coram-nobis proceeding. To
prevail, the petitioner claiming a right to the writ must
demonstrate that his plea was obtained through intimidation,
coercion, or threats arising from fear, duress, or threats of
mob violence as previously acknowledged by this court as
cognizable for coram-nobis relief. Noble v. State,
2015 Ark. 141, 460 S.W.3d 774. The application for
coram-nobis relief must make a full disclosure of specific
facts relied upon as the basis for the writ. Larimore v.
State, 327 Ark. 271, 938 S.W.2d 818 (1997). Because
Mitchell failed to assert facts in support of the allegations
contained in the coram-nobis petition that established a
ground for the writ, the trial court did not err in denying
the petition. Markus v. State, 2015 Ark. 228, at 4,
463 S.W.3d 675, 677 (per curiam).
degree that Mitchell argued that he was entitled to issuance
of the writ on the ground that the evidence was insufficient
to support the judgment in his case, the sufficiency of the
evidence is not an issue within the purview of a coram-nobis