Jordan v. Epps et al
ORDER granting 88 Motion to Substitute Attorney. Added attorney Thomas C. Levidiotis for Kelvin Jordan. Attorney Stacy Ferraro terminated; granting 89 Motion to Extend Deadline; counsel to submit,ex parte, proposed budget by April 16, 2018; motion for leave to file amended petition due by August 16, 2018. Signed by District Judge Tom S. Lee on March 13, 2018 (Rushing, Terryl)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF MISSISSIPPI
CIVIL ACTION NO.: 2:13CV301TSL
PELICIA HALL, Commissioner of the Mississippi
Department of Corrections; MARSHALL TURNER,
Superintendent of the Mississippi State Penitentiary,
and JIM HOOD, Attorney General of the State of
ORDER GRANTING MOTION TO SUBSTITUTE COUNSEL AND
MOTION FOR EXTENSION OF TIME TO FILE MOTION TO AMEND
This matter came before the Court on two Motions filed by the Petitioner: a Motion to
Substitute Counsel [Doc. #88] and a Motion for Extension of Time to File Motion Seeking Leave
to File Amended Petition [Doc. #89]. The Respondents have not opposed either Motion. Having
reviewed both Motions, the Court is of the opinion that they should be granted, subject to the
conditions explained below.
The Motion to Substitute Counsel was filed because one of Jordan’s current attorneys,
Stacy Ferraro, has taken a permanent, full-time position with the Office of the State Public
Defender and is not permitted to engage in the practice of law outside of that office. This
Motion will be granted. The Court has reviewed its Capital Habeas CJA Panel and has
determined that Tom Levidiotis, a member of the Panel with experience in capital habeas cases,
should be appointed in place of Ms. Ferraro. The Court has contacted Levidiotis, and he is
willing to accept this Appointment. Rob Mink will remain designated as lead counsel, and both
attorneys will be compensated at the maximum rate set forth in the Guide to Judiciary Policy,
vol. 7, § 630.10.
The Court has reviewed the attorneys’ fees billed to date and determined that they
amount to almost $35,000.00, which is the presumptive maximum permitted by the Fifth Circuit
in a capital case. For that reason, and to insure that these attorneys are fully and expediently
paid, the Court will order that counsel prepare a budget for the remaining work on this case.
That budget should include any attorneys’ fees that have not yet been billed and may be
submitted to the Court ex parte. Should counsel need help in preparing this budget, they are
directed to consult with the Circuit Case-Budgeting Attorney and the Court’s Death Penalty Law
Clerk. Once this Court has approved the budget, it will be forwarded to the Chief Judge of the
Fifth Circuit for his approval.
With regard to the Motion for Extension of Time to File Motion Seeking Leave to File
Amended Petition, the Court is of the opinion that the request is justified by the appointment of
new counsel, as well as the need for counsel to prepare and submit a budget for the remaining
work on this case. This Motion will also be granted. In so doing, the Court will set two
deadlines in this matter: one for submission of a budget and another for filing the Motion
Seeking Leave to File Amended Petition.
IT IS, THEREFORE, ORDERED, as follows:
1. The Petitioner’s Motion to Substitute Counsel [Doc. #88] is hereby granted. Stacy
Ferraro is permitted to withdraw from this case, and Tom Levidiotis is appointed as
co-counsel with Rob Mink. Mink will continue to act as lead counsel. The Clerk is
directed to send to Levidiotis all forms and vouchers necessary to permit him to
comply with the requirements for obtaining reimbursement for expenses and payment
for attorneys’ fees for services rendered in connection with this cause.
2. The Petitioner’s Motion for Extension of Time to File Motion Seeking Leave to File
Amended Petition [Doc. #89] is also granted. Counsel shall submit, ex parte, a
proposed budget for the remaining work on this case by April 16, 2018. The
Petitioner’s motion for leave to file an amended petition is due on or before August
IT IS SO ORDERED, this the 13th_ day of March, 2018.
/s/Tom S. Lee_______________________
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Disclaimer: Justia Dockets & Filings provides public litigation records from the federal appellate and district courts. These filings and docket sheets should not be considered findings of fact or liability, nor do they necessarily reflect the view of Justia.
Why Is My Information Online?