FROM THE LEE COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT [NO. 39CV-18-58] HONORABLE
CHALK MITCHELL, JUDGE
Everett Foreman, pro se appellant.
Rutledge, Att'y Gen., by: Rachel Kemp, Ass't
Att'y Gen., for appellee.
R. BAKER, ASSOCIATE JUSTICE
Everett Foreman appeals the denial by the Lee County Circuit
Court of his petition for writ of habeas corpus filed
pursuant to Arkansas Code Annotated section 16-112-101 (Repl.
2016). Foreman raises two grounds for reversal of the
order-that the circuit court erred in declaring his petition
untimely and in holding that the petition was without merit.
1994, Foreman was convicted in Pulaski County Circuit Court
of first-degree murder in the shooting death of an off-duty
police officer and sentenced to life imprisonment. This court
reversed the judgment and remanded the case for a new trial.
Foreman v. State, 321 Ark. 167, 901 S.W.2d 802
(1995). On retrial, Foreman was again convicted and sentenced
to life imprisonment. We affirmed. Foreman v. State,
328 Ark. 583, 945 S.W.2d 926 (1997). Foreman filed the
petition for writ of habeas corpus in the county where he is
Grounds for Issuance of the Writ
of habeas corpus is proper when a judgment of conviction is
invalid on its face or when a circuit court lacks
jurisdiction over the cause. Philyaw v. Kelley, 2015
Ark. 465, 477 S.W.3d 503. Jurisdiction is the power of the
court to hear and determine the subject matter in
controversy. Baker v. Norris, 369 Ark. 405, 255
S.W.3d 466 (2007). When the trial court has personal
jurisdiction over the appellant and also has jurisdiction
over the subject matter, the court has authority to render
the judgment. Johnson v. State, 298 Ark. 479, 769
S.W.2d 3 (1989).
our statute, a petitioner for the writ who does not allege
his actual innocence and proceed under Act 1780 of 2001 must
plead either the facial invalidity of the judgment or the
lack of jurisdiction by the trial court and make a showing by
affidavit or other evidence of probable cause to believe that
he is being illegally detained. Ark. Code Ann. §
16-112-103(a)(1) (Repl. 2016). Unless the petitioner can show
that the trial court lacked jurisdiction or that the
commitment was invalid on its face, there is no basis for a
finding that a writ of habeas corpus should issue. Fields
v. Hobbs, 2013 Ark. 416.
Standard of Review
circuit court's decision on a petition for writ of habeas
corpus will be upheld unless it is clearly erroneous.
Hobbs v. Gordon, 2014 Ark. 225, 434 S.W.3d 364. A
decision is clearly erroneous when, although there is
evidence to support it, the appellate court, after reviewing
the entire evidence, is left with the definite and firm
conviction that a mistake has been made. Id.
Timeliness of the Petition
circuit court held that, in addition to being without merit,
Foreman's petition for writ of habeas corpus was not
timely because it was not filed within ninety days of the
date that the judgment of conviction was entered. However,
the Arkansas Constitution nor the state statutes place a time
limit on pursuing a writ of habeas corpus. Renshaw v.
Norris, 337 Ark. 494, 989 S.W.2d 515 (1999). Indeed, to
do so would contravene the proscription against suspending
the right to habeas corpus. Id. Nevertheless, the
court was correct that Foreman's petition clearly lacked
merit. This court will affirm ...