Stanley v. Coomer , 2014 Ark. 338 ( 2014 )


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  •                                       Cite as 
    2014 Ark. 338
    
                       SUPREME COURT OF ARKANSAS
                                             No.   CV-14-439
    
                                                        Opinion Delivered July 31, 2014
    
    
    OSCAR W. STANLEY                                    PRO SE MOTION TO PROCEED IN
                                    PETITIONER          FORMA PAUPERIS
                                                        [SEBASTIAN COUNTY CIRCUIT
    V.                                                  COURT, FORT SMITH DISTRICT, NO.
                                                        66CV-14-36]
    DENORA COOMER, CIRCUIT CLERK
    OF SEBASTIAN COUNTY, FORT                           HONORABLE STEPHEN TABOR,
    SMITH DISTRICT                                      CIRCUIT JUDGE
                      RESPONDENT
                                                        MOTION DENIED.
    
                                            PER CURIAM
           On January 16, 2014, petitioner Oscar W. Stanley filed a petition in the Sebastian County
    
    Circuit Court, Fort Smith District, seeking to proceed in forma pauperis. He said in the petition
    
    that he wished to proceed as an indigent with a petition for declaratory judgment in a civil matter
    
    and that the respondent was Ray Hobbs, the Director of the Arkansas Department of
    
    Correction. The circuit court denied the petition on the ground that the proposed pleading did
    
    not state a colorable cause of action. Petitioner timely filed a notice of appeal from the order
    
    and tendered the record on appeal to this court. Now before us is petitioner’s pro se petition
    
    seeking leave to lodge the appeal without paying the filing fee required to lodge an appeal in a
    
    civil matter.
    
           The record tendered to this court contains only the petition to proceed in forma pauperis
    
    filed in the circuit court, the order denying the petition, and the notice of appeal. Rule 72 of the
    
    Arkansas Rules of Civil Procedure conditions the right to proceed in forma pauperis in civil
                                           Cite as 
    2014 Ark. 338
    
    matters upon, among other things, the court’s satisfaction that the alleged facts indicate a
    
    colorable cause of action. Brown v. Sachar, 
    2013 Ark. 319
     (per curiam); Boles v. Huckabee, 
    340 Ark. 410
    , 
    12 S.W.3d 201
     (2000) (per curiam). A colorable cause of action is a claim that is legitimate
    
    and may reasonably be asserted given the facts presented and the current law or a reasonable and
    
    logical extension or modification of it. Brown, 
    2013 Ark. 319
    . As grounds for his request to
    
    proceed without paying a filing fee, petitioner states the following:
    
           The sentencing phase record of the case cause (Sebastian Co.–Arkansas) Circuit Court
           (No. CR-12-321) is so dispositive of the fact that the terms of the plea agreement as
           stated by court and entered into by this afficant [sic] petitioner has not and is still not
           being met per the “judgment & commitment order” supplied to the Ark. Dept. of
           Correction–by the (Sebastian Co.–Ark.–circuit court clerk) failure to adhere to the plea
           agreement is grounds to void the plea!
    
    Based on petitioner’s statement, we cannot say that petitioner has established a colorable cause
    
    of action that is legitimate and may reasonably be asserted given the facts presented and the
    
    current law or a reasonable and logical extension or modification of it. Where no fundamental
    
    right is involved, filing fees do not violate due process. Brown, 
    2013 Ark. 319
     (citing Partin v. Bar
    
    of Ark., 
    320 Ark. 37
    , 
    894 S.W.2d 906
     (1995)). Petitioner has not demonstrated that he should
    
    be allowed to proceed without paying a fee to lodge an appeal.
    
           In his motion, petitioner also contends that he is entitled to proceed in forma pauperis
    
    because he is unable to pay the costs associated with the proceeding and the petition is not being
    
    brought for a frivolous or malicious purpose. The statement also does not constitute a showing
    
    of a colorable cause of action.
    
           If petitioner desires to proceed with an appeal from the order that denied his motion to
    
    proceed in forma pauperis, he is responsible for remitting the required filing fee at his expense
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    2014 Ark. 338
    
    within thirty days of the date of this opinion. See Brown, 
    2013 Ark. 319
    ; see also Young v. Black, 
    366 Ark. 198
    , 
    234 S.W.3d 284
     (2006) (per curiam).
    
               Motion denied.
    
               Oscar W. Stanley, pro se petitioner.
    
               No response.
    

Document Info

DocketNumber: CV-14-439

Citation Numbers: 2014 Ark. 338

Judges: Per Curiam

Filed Date: 7/31/2014

Precedential Status: Precedential

Modified Date: 3/3/2016