APPEAL FROM THE HOT SPRING COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT AND MOTION TO
INCLUDE SUPPLEMENTAL ADDENDUM IN REPLY BRIEF [NO.
30CV-18-359] HONORABLE CHRIS E WILLIAMS, JUDGE
Leonard Noble, pro se appellant.
Rutledge, Att'y Gen., by: Brad Newman, Ass't
Att'y Gen., for appellee.
K. WOOD, ASSOCIATE JUSTICE
Noble appeals the dismissal of his pro se petition for writ
of habeas corpus filed pursuant to Arkansas Code Annotated
section 16-112-101 (Repl. 2016). Noble raises two grounds for
reversal-that the circuit court erred in declining to issue
the writ based on the State's failure to afford Noble a
speedy trial and by not holding an evidentiary hearing on his
petition. Because Noble did not state a ground for the writ,
we affirm the circuit court's order, and find his
subsequent motion seeking leave to file a supplemental
addendum in his reply brief is moot.
1999, a Sebastian County Circuit Court jury found Noble
guilty of residential burglary and rape and sentenced him as
a habitual offender to an aggregate sentence of 900
months' imprisonment. The Arkansas Court of Appeals
affirmed. Noble v. State, CR-00-587 (Ark. App. Sept.
19, 2001) (unpublished) (original docket no. CACR 00-587).
Noble filed the petition for writ of habeas corpus in the
county where he is currently incarcerated
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).
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. The
circuit court dismissed Noble's habeas petition on its
merits; that is, it held that Noble had not been denied a
speedy trial. The issue at hand, however, is whether Noble
stated a ground for issuance of the writ. As he did not do
so, the habeas petition was subject to dismissal by the
circuit court, and this court will affirm the circuit
court's decision when it reached the right result even if
a wrong reason may have been stated. See Marshall v.
State, 2017 Ark. 208, at 5, 521 S.W.3d 456, 459.
court has held that speedy-trial issues are not cognizable in
habeas proceedings. Williams v. Kelley, 2017 Ark.
200, at 4, 521 S.W.3d 104, 107. Allegations of speedy-trial
violations are assertions of trial error that do not
implicate the facial validity of the judgment or the
jurisdiction of the trial court. Id. If there were
errors at trial, those issues could, and should, have been
raised at trial and on the record on direct appeal and are
thus not within the purview of the remedy because the writ of
habeas corpus will not be issued to correct errors or
irregularities that occurred at trial. Stephenson v.
Kelley, 2018 Ark. 143, 544 S.W.3d 44.
also contends that the circuit court should have held a
hearing on his petition. Our statutory scheme does not
mandate a hearing on a habeas petition regardless of the
allegations contained in it. Collier v. Kelley, 2018
Ark. 170, at 4. A hearing is not required on a habeas
petition when probable cause for issuance of the writ is not
shown by affidavit or other evidence. Id. Because
Noble failed to establish probable cause for issuance of the
writ, he was not entitled to a hearing. Johnson v.
State, 2018 Ark. 42, 5, 538 S.W.3d 819, 822.
Josephine Linker Hart, Justice, dissenting.
yet another case in which this court has impermissibly
narrowed the grounds for relief under our state habeas corpus
statute. This stance continues to perplex in light of the
Supreme Court of the United States' rejection of this
limit on habeas corpus when it reversed Jackson v.
Norris, 2011 Ark. 49, 378 S.W.3d 103 (Jackson