SUPREME COURT OF ARKANSAS
No. CACR 05-1168
LELAND D. LAWSON,
STATE OF ARKANSAS,
Opinion Delivered SEPTEMBER 14, 2006
MOTION TO FILE A BELATED APPEAL
Leland D. Lawson filed a motion for belated appeal in the Arkansas Court of Appeals.
The court of appeals certified the motion to this court because, pursuant to Ark. R. App.
P.–Crim. 2(e), this court may act upon and decide a case in which the notice of appeal was
not timely. Lawson filed this motion for belated appeal seeking relief after the court of
appeals dismissed his prior appeal for failure to timely file a notice of appeal.
This case arises from a conditional plea of guilty under Ark. R. Crim. P. 24.3. On
July 5, 2005, a hearing was held in the circuit court on Leland’s motion to suppress. The
motion was denied that day, and Lawson’s attorney, Blake Chancellor, subsequently filed a
notice of appeal from the ruling against Lawson’s motion to suppress entered on July 5,
A conditional plea under Rule 24.3 provides the right to appeal from the “judgment,”
and this court has made clear that the appeal must be taken from the judgment and not the
order denying the motion to suppress. See Williams v. State, ___ Ark. ___, ___ S.W.3d ___
(June 15, 2006) (per curiam). Consistent with this law, the court of appeals granted the
motion to dismiss.
Lawson now moves to be allowed a belated appeal based upon the court of appeals’
ruling that, pursuant to Williams, he may not be precluded from filing a motion for belated
This court does not agree with the State’s contention that we should limit the availability
of appellate Rule 2 to the review of an appealed conviction rather than the review of a denial
of a motion to suppress pursuant to Rule 24.3(b).
appeal. Relief from failure to perfect an appeal is provided as part of the appellate procedure
granting the right to an appeal. Id.; McDonald v. State, 356 Ark. 106, 146 S.W.3d 883
(2004). Further, under Rule 2(e), an attorney or a criminal d