Matthew B. Foley v. State of Tennessee

Matthew B. Foley v. State of Tennessee
M2018-01963-CCA-R3-PC

This is the third occasion Petitioner, Matthew B. Foley, appeals from a denial of his petition for post-conviction relief raising the same primary lament – he does not belong on the Tennessee Sexual Offender Registry. He is seeking relief from his 2002 guilty-pleaded conviction for facilitation of especially aggravated kidnapping, an offense which, at the time of his plea agreement, was not listed as an offense requiring sexual offender registration. Petitioner, who was a sixteen year-old minor at the time of his guilty plea, continues to allege that the statute of limitations for post-conviction relief should be tolled on due process grounds and that the State breached a material element of his plea agreement by requiring him to register as a sex offender. The post-conviction court summarily denied relief based on the expiration of the statute of limitations. In the first appeal, this Court concluded that the statute of limitations should be tolled based on due process grounds, and we remanded the case for an evidentiary hearing. Matthew B. Foley v. State, No. M2015-00311-CCA-R3-PC, 2016 WL 245857, at *8 (Tenn. Crim. App. Jan. 20, 2016), no perm. app. filed (“Foley I”). On remand, the post-conviction court held a hearing and found the statute of limitations should not be tolled. In the second appeal, this Court found that the statute of limitations issue had been conclusively decided in Foley I and remanded the case to the post-conviction court for an evidentiary hearing on the merits. Matthew B. Foley v. State, No. M2016-02456-CCA-R3-PC, 2017 WL 5054571, at *3 (Tenn. Crim. App. Nov. 1, 2017) no perm. app. filed (“Foley II”). On remand for the second time, the post-conviction court denied the petition, finding that Petitioner failed to diligently pursue his rights and, therefore, that the statute of limitations should not be tolled. The post-conviction court also found that Petitioner failed to show the State violated a material element of his plea agreement and failed to show the State violated his due process rights. For the following reasons, we reverse the judgment of the post-conviction court, grant post-conviction relief and remand the case for further proceedings consistent with this opinion.

Authoring Judge: 
Judge Timothy L. Easter
Originating Judge: 
Judge David M. Bragg
Date Filed: 
Thursday, February 27, 2020