United States District Court, E.D. Arkansas, Pine Bluff Division
PROPOSED FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
VOLPE UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
following recommended disposition has been sent to United
States District Judge Billy Roy Wilson. Any party may serve
and file written objections to this recommendation.
Objections should be specific and should include the factual
or legal basis for the objection. If the objection is to a
factual finding, specifically identify that finding and the
evidence that supports your objection. An original and one
copy of your objections must be received in the office of the
United States District Court Clerk no later than fourteen
days from the date of the findings and recommendations. The
copy will be furnished to the opposing party. Failure to file
timely objections may result in a waiver of the right to
appeal questions of fact.
are objecting to the recommendation and also desire to submit
new, different, or additional evidence, and to have a new
hearing for this purpose before either the District Judge or
Magistrate Judge, you must, at the time you file your written
objections, include the following:
1. Why the record made before the Magistrate Judge is
2. Why the evidence to be proffered at the new hearing (if
such a hearing is granted) was not offered at the hearing
before the Magistrate Judge.
3. The details of any testimony desired to be introduced at
the new hearing in the form of an offer of proof, and a copy,
or the original, of any documentary or other non-testimonial
evidence desired to be introduced at the new hearing.
this submission, the District Judge will determine the
necessity for an additional evidentiary hearing. Mail your
objections and “Statement of Necessity” to:
Clerk, United States District Court Eastern District of
Arkansas 600 West Capitol Avenue, Suite A149 Little Rock, AR
Michael Bowden, was convicted of capital murder by a Boone
County jury in 1987 and sentenced to life without the
possibility of parole. (Doc. No. 7 at 1.) The Arkansas
Supreme Court reversed his conviction based upon an improper
police lineup procedure and remanded the case for a retrial.
(Id.) Mr. Bowden was retried, once again convicted
of capital murder, and sentenced to life without the
possibility of parole. (Id.) His direct appeal on
this second conviction was unsuccessful. Bowden v.
State, 301 Ark. 303 (1990). Additionally, Mr.
Bowden's subsequent petition for Rule 37 relief was also
denied. (Id.) Bowden v. State, 1992 WL
94509 (Ark. Apr. 20, 1992). The Arkansas Supreme Court
recounted the facts of the case in Mr. Bowden's first
appeal as follows:
At 1:55 a.m. on April 19, 1987, Gary Keeter, a Harrison
police officer, went to the home of Johnny Hefley in response
to a call that there was a disturbance there. Upon the
officer's arrival, a man from across the street told him
that he had “a little boy over at his home who says his
mom and dad is bleeding.” Upon entering Hefley's
residence, Keeter saw the bleeding bodies of Johnny Hefley
and Cindy Bowden, Hefley's former wife. In addition,
Keeter saw a number of nine millimeter shell casings lying on
Other officers arrived on the scene a few minutes later.
According to Officer Glen Redding, the police were able to
make the following factual observations at this point: (1)
the victims were shot to death; (2) neither victim appeared
to be armed; (3) there was no forced entry into the
residence; (4) in light of the location of the bodies
(Hefley's was slumped over in a chair; Bowden's was
on the floor beside Hefley's), what they were wearing,
and the fact that there were no signs of forced entry, Hefley
and Bowden apparently knew their murderer.
Upon being advised that Hefley's and Bowden's
five-year-old son, John David Hefley, was across the street
at a neighbor's residence, Officer David Cone spoke with
him. John David told the officer that he had been in his
bedroom and heard what he thought was a fight between his
mother and father and that he got out of bed, walked into the
living room, and found his mother and dad lying on the floor.
The officer then asked him if anyone else had been there that
night. John David replied, “Michael Bowden from
Officers at the scene also talked with Michael James, who
lived two houses down from the Hefleys' home. According
to James, as he was driving up to his house earlier that
night around 1:30 a.m., he noticed a late 70's dark blue
Ford pickup truck parked on the street in front of the
Hefleys' home. A few minutes later, while he was at his
home, James heard a loud metallic banging noise and a female
voice “trying to get them to stop.” In all, he
heard seven or eight of these noises. Immediately thereafter,
he heard a car door slam and gravel spin out from under the
tires. He then looked out of his window and saw the pickup