Corey D. PERKINS, Appellant
STATE of Arkansas, Appellee
FROM THE PULASKI COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT [NO. 60CR 2017-0340],
HONORABLE WENDELL GRIFFEN, JUDGE
Law Firm by: Gregg A. Knutson, for appellant.
Rutledge, Atty Gen., by: Christian Harris, Asst Atty Gen.,
K. WOOD, Associate Justice
Appellant 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 Perkinss convictions, but remand with
instructions to correct the sentencing order.
night of November 8, 2016, Corey Perkins shot Wilber Johnson.
The bullet went through Johnsons 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.
July 27, 2017, defense counsel requested an Act 3 mental
evaluation to determine Perkinss fitness to stand trial. The
court granted the motion. Due to repeated transportation
complications, Perkinss 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, Perkinss bench trial began.
Perkins was convicted and sentenced. He now appeals.
initial matter, the State contends that Perkins did not
preserve his specific speedy-trial argument for appeal.
Perkinss 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
defendants 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), Perkinss 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 violation.
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 defendants
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 reports filing date is
28.3(a) of the Arkansas Rules of Criminal Procedure expressly
provides that the period of delay resulting from an
examination of the defendants 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 reports 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 courts 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 Perkinss 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 Perkinss motion to dismiss.
Perkins 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
Specifically, Perkins contends the circuit court erred in not
allowing him to ask six questions during Johnsons
cross-examination. Immediately prior to the questions,
Perkins attempted to admit several pages of Johnsons 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
[THE DEFENSE]: Your Honor, can I ask questions from these
reports summarized and see what his response is?
THE COURT: Well, lets see what the question is.
[THE DEFENSE]: Im 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. Thats the first
[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: Lets hear what the question is. Whats your
[THE DEFENSE]: You allegedly had a psychiatry - history of
psychiatry. Can you tell us what thats 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 ...