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State v. McDonald

Court of Criminal Appeals of Tennessee, Nashville

January 30, 2018

STATE OF TENNESSEE
v.
JESSIE D. McDONALD

          Assigned on Briefs October 18, 2017

         Appeal from the Criminal Court for Davidson County Nos. B-317 & 2007-D-3344 Cheryl A. Blackburn, Judge

         The Petitioner, Jessie D. McDonald, appeals from the Davidson County Criminal Court's summary dismissal of his petition for a writ of error coram nobis. The Petitioner contends that the coram nobis court erred by summarily dismissing his petition as having been untimely filed and failing to state a cognizable claim. Following our review, we affirm the judgment of the coram nobis court.

         Tenn. R. App. P. 3 Appeal as of Right; Judgment of the Criminal Court Affirmed

          Jessie D. McDonald, Nashville, Tennessee, pro se.

          Herbert H. Slatery III, Attorney General and Reporter; Alexander C. Vey, Assistant Attorney General; Glenn R. Funk, District Attorney General; and Megan McNabb King, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

          D. Kelly Thomas, Jr., J., delivered the opinion of the court, in which Robert H. Montgomery, Jr., and Timothy L. Easter, JJ., joined.

          OPINION

          D. KELLY THOMAS, JR., JUDGE

         FACTUAL BACKGROUND

         I. False Pretenses Conviction

         Following a 1974 jury trial, the Petitioner was convicted of the offense of obtaining property by false pretenses in violation of Tennessee Code Annotated section 39-1901, now section 39-3-901 (case number B-317). For his crime, he was sentenced to three years' incarceration. Upon direct appeal, this court reversed the conviction. However, the Supreme Court of Tennessee reversed our decision and reinstated the judgment. See State v. McDonald, 534 S.W.2d 650 (Tenn. 1976), reh'g denied (Mar. 15, 1976). The United States Supreme Court later denied review. McDonald v. Tennessee, 425 U.S. 955, reh'g denied, 425 U.S. 1000 (1976).

         The Petitioner, in the late 1980s, filed a pro se pleading in the trial court styled "motion to set aside conviction." See Jessie D. McDonald v. State, No. 88-285-III, 1989 WL 22697, at *1 (Tenn. Crim. App. Mar. 17, 1989), perm. app. denied (Tenn. June 5, 1989), cert. denied, 493 U.S. 845 (Oct. 2, 1989). The trial court denied the motion on the basis of lack of jurisdiction to grant the relief sought, and this court affirmed. Id. at *2.

         In the 1989 opinion of this court, we noted then that the Petitioner was a prolific litigant who had filed numerous actions challenging the validity of his 1974 conviction. We made the following observations:

In the dozen or so years since the Tennessee Supreme Court's opinion was released and [the Petitioner's] conviction was reinstated, he has maintained a steady barrage of pro se motions and petitions attacking the [s]upreme [c]ourt's judgment. These have included petitions for post-conviction relief, habeas corpus relief, and coram nobis relief, as well as numerous motions to set aside the original judgment under both the civil and criminal rules. The complaint is always the same: that under the due process clause, the [Petitioner] is entitled to have the 1974 judgment of conviction vacated based on this court's ...

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