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Arnold v. Butts

Court of Appeals of Indiana

January 19, 2018

Jeffrey Arnold, Appellant-Petitioner,
v.
Keith Butts, Warden of the New Castle Correctional Facility Appellee-Respondent

         Appeal from the Henry Circuit Court The Honorable Kit C. Dean Crane, Judge Trial Court Cause No. 33C02-1611-MI-120.

          APPELLANT PRO SE Jeffrey Arnold New Castle, Indiana.

          ATTORNEYS FOR APPELLEE Curtis T. Hill, Jr. Attorney General of Indiana Andrea E. Rahman Deputy Attorney General Indianapolis, Indiana.

          ALTICE, JUDGE.

         Case Summary

         [¶1] Jeffrey Arnold appeals pro se from the denial of his petition for writ of habeas corpus. On appeal, Arnold argues that the trial court erred in rejecting his argument that his detention following the revocation of his parole was illegal because his parole had been discharged prior to the alleged violation.

         [¶2] We affirm.

         Facts & Procedural History

         [¶3] The relevant facts are not in dispute. On November 17, 2005, Arnold was sentenced to ten years in prison for sexual misconduct with a minor under cause number 57C01-0506-FB-37 (Cause 37). On December 15, 2005, Arnold was sentenced to six months for resisting law enforcement in cause number 57C01-0601-FD-01 (Cause 01). On January 18, 2006, Arnold was sentenced to twenty years in prison for battery under cause number 57C01-0412-FB-56 (Cause 56). The sentences in Causes 37 and 56 were to be served concurrently, while the sentence in Cause 01 was to be served consecutively to Causes 37 and 56.

         [¶4] Arnold was released to parole status in Cause 37 on December 17, 2013, but remained incarcerated on Cause 56. Arnold was released to parole status in Cause 56 on April 29, 2014, at which time he began serving the consecutive six-month sentence in Cause 01. Arnold was released from prison on parole on July 29, 2014, and his sentence under Cause 01 was discharged on October 28, 2014. In February 2015, warrants were issued for Arnold's arrest under Causes 37 and 56 for an alleged parole violation.[1] Arnold's parole was subsequently revoked, and he was ordered to serve the remainder of his time under Causes 37 and 56.

         [¶5] Arnold filed his petition for writ of habeas corpus on November 28, 2016, in which he argued that his detention was illegal because his parole had been discharged prior to the violation on which the revocations were premised. Specifically, he argued that his terms of parole in Causes 37 and 56 were discharged on April 28, 2014, when he began serving his sentence under Cause 01. In response, Warden Keith Butts of the New Castle Correctional Facility filed a motion for summary disposition, treating Arnold's filing as a petition for post-conviction relief rather than a petition for writ of habeas corpus. On January 31, 2017, the trial court granted Warden Butts's motion for summary disposition and denied Arnold's request for relief. Arnold now appeals.

         Discussion & Decision

         [¶6] As an initial matter, we note that the trial court construed Arnold's petition as a petition for post-conviction relief rather than habeas corpus, and therefore entered summary disposition under Post-Conviction Rule 1(4)(g). Arnold argues in a footnote that this was error, but he does not ask us to remand for a hearing. Because Arnold asks us to decide this case on the merits, we need not consider whether the trial court properly determined that Arnold's petition was subject to summary disposition. See Hobbs v. Butts, 83 N.E.3d 1246, 1249 (Ind.Ct.App. 2017).

         [¶7] The parties in this case do not dispute any factual events; rather, they disagree as to whether those facts resulted in the discharge of Arnold's sentences in Causes 37 and 56 prior to the revocation of his parole. Thus, we are ...


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