COREY D. PERKINS APPELLANT
STATE OF ARKANSAS APPELLEE
FROM THE PULASKI COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT [NO. 60CR 2017-0340]
HONORABLE WENDELL GRIFFEN, JUDGE.
Knutson Law Firm by: Gregg A. Knutson, for appellant.
Rutledge, Att'y Gen., by: Christian Harris, Ass't
Att'y Gen., for appellee.
K. WOOD, ASSOCIATE JUSTICE.
Corey Perkins was convicted of first-degree battery, a
terroristic act, and possession of a firearm by certain
persons. Perkins argues that his convictions must be reversed
and the charges dismissed because his right to a speedy trial
was violated. Alternatively, he asserts that his case must be
reversed and remanded for a new trial because the circuit
court improperly limited his cross-examination of the victim.
We affirm Perkins's convictions, but remand with
instructions to correct the sentencing order.
night of November 8, 2016, Corey Perkins shot Wilber Johnson.
The bullet went through Johnson's right hand and left
forearm, resulting in lasting, disabling injuries. Little
Rock police officers arrested Perkins on December 29, 2016.
Following his arrest, Perkins was transported and held in the
Arkansas Department of Correction in connection with a
separate criminal proceeding.
27, 2017, defense counsel requested an Act 3 mental
evaluation to determine Perkins's fitness to stand trial.
The court granted the motion. Due to repeated transportation
complications, Perkins's evaluation was not completed
until March 28, 2018. The evaluation concluded that Perkins
was fit to stand trial. On April 6, 2018, the report was
filed with the court, and on July 26, 2018, Perkins's
bench trial began. Perkins was convicted and sentenced. He
initial matter, the State contends that Perkins did not
preserve his specific speedy-trial argument for appeal.
Perkins's counsel filed a motion for release under
Arkansas Rule of Criminal Procedure 28.1(a) and on appeal
argues Rule 28.1(b). Although the State recognizes that
Perkins also filed a written, pro se speedy-trial motion
under Rule 28.1(b), it argues that he failed to obtain a
ruling from the circuit court. That is incorrect.
December 11, 2017, the court conducted a hearing to report on
the status of the Act 3 evaluation. Perkins, against the
advice of his counsel, orally argued the points advanced in
his written, pro se speedy-trial motion. The circuit court
entertained his motion, gave a reasoned explanation in
response, and expressly "denie[d] the motion made by Mr.
Perkins." The speedy-trial issue is therefore preserved
conduct a de novo review to determine whether specific
periods of time are excludable under our speedy-trial rules.
Carter v. State, 2016 Ark. 152, at 3, 484 S.W.3d
673, 674. Once a defendant establishes that his trial took
place outside the speedy-trial period, the State bears the
burden of showing that the delay was the result of the
defendant's conduct or otherwise justified. Id.
Perkins contends the State failed to bring him to trial
within twelve months of the date of his arrest, as required
by Rule 28.1(b) of the Arkansas Rules of Criminal Procedure.
Pursuant to Rule 28.2(a), Perkins's speedy-trial clock
began to run on December 29, 2016. Ark. R. Crim. P. 28.2(a)
(2019). His bench trial began 574 days later, on July 26,
2018. This satisfies a prima facia showing of a speedy-trial
State must establish that at least 209 days were excludable
from the speedy-trial calculation. To meet this burden, the
State points to the delay attributable to the defendant's
request for an Act 3 mental evaluation. Specifically, the
State contends that the time between the court orally
ordering the Act 3 evaluation and the report's filing
date is excludable.
28.3(a) of the Arkansas Rules of Criminal Procedure expressly
provides that the period of delay resulting from an
examination of the defendant's competency shall be
excluded in computing the time for trial. Ark. R. Crim. P.
28.3(a) (2019). When tolling time for a mental evaluation, we
have consistently stated that time is excluded from the
"date the exam is ordered to the report's file
date." Davis v. State, 375 Ark. 368, 373, 291
S.W.3d 164, 168 (2009). We have equally maintained that an
oral order announced from the bench does not become effective
until reduced to writing and filed. E.g.,
Zimmerman v. Circuit Court of Miller Cty., 2018 Ark.
264, at 5, 555 S.W.3d 406, 409. Accordingly, we exclude the
time from the circuit court's written order that was
entered on September 6, 2017, until and the resulting
evaluation was filed on April 6, 2018. In other words, 212
days are excludable as a result of Perkins's request for
a mental evaluation. Therefore, Perkins was brought to trial
within 365 days.
asserts that because he was not personally responsible for
missing his various Act 3 appointments, the State must
further justify the delays. In Brawley v. State, we
considered and rejected this very argument. 306 Ark. 609,
613, 816 S.W.2d 598, 601 (1991) (reasoning that "[t]he
literal language of Rule 28.3(a) states simply that the
period required by a competency examination is
excluded"). Because the State established that at least
209 days were excludable, the circuit court did not err in
denying Perkins's motion to dismiss.
also argues that his case must be reversed and remanded for a
new trial because the circuit court abused its discretion in
limiting his cross-examination of the victim, Wilber Johnson.
The circuit court enjoys wide latitude to impose reasonable
limitations during cross-examination of matters that are
slightly relevant. Gordon v. State, 326 Ark. 90, 94,
931 S.W.2d 91, 93 (1996). The decision to admit or exclude
evidence is within the sound discretion of the circuit court,
and we will not reverse that decision absent a manifest abuse
of discretion. E.g., Scamardo v. State,
2013 Ark. 163, at 7, 426 S.W.3d 900, 904.
Perkins contends the circuit court erred in not allowing him
to ask six questions during Johnson's cross-examination.
Immediately prior to the questions, Perkins attempted to
admit several pages of Johnson's UAMS medical records as
defense exhibits. The circuit court ruled that the proffered
reports were irrelevant because they did not make it more or
less likely that a battery occurred. Nevertheless, Perkins
engaged the court in the following colloquy:
[The Defense]: Your Honor, can I ask questions from these
reports summarized and see what his response is?
The Court: Well, let's see what the question is.
[The Defense]: I'm going to ask him if on the night that
he was brought in or a few days later on the 11th he accused
the UAMS of stealing his keys and his money. That's the
[. . . .]
[The State]: No, Your Honor. There is an objection to
The Court: What is the objection? Relevancy?
[The State]: Yes, Your Honor.
The Court: Sustained.
[ . . . .]
[The Defense]: [No.] 7 is the question I wanted to ask him
about his psychiatric history, you know.
[The State]: Objection, relevance.
The Court: Let's hear what the question is. What's
[The Defense]: You allegedly had a psychiatry – history
of psychiatry. Can you tell us what that's all about?
[The State]: Object.
The Court: Sustained.
[The Defense]: No. 8, you were incoherent when you went in.
And obviously, I put that to the fact he was incoherent in
the hospital. How could he report my client supposedly shot
[The State]: Objection again, Your ...