Court of Appeals of Missouri, Southern District, First Division
LOUIS A. HARDISON, Plaintiff-Appellant,
DAVID MCCRACKEN, BRADLEY FIENEN, and ROBERT VAUGHAN, Defendants-Respondents.
FROM THE CIRCUIT COURT OF NEWTON COUNTY Honorable Kevin L.
A. Hardison ("Appellant") is representing himself
in these consolidated appeals in which he is attempting to
appeal the trial court's denial of Appellant's motion
for summary judgment and the trial court's judgments in
favor of state and county officials on their motions for
judgment on the pleadings. Because Appellant's
significant briefing deficiencies materially impede impartial
review, we must dismiss his appeals.
2017, Appellant sued David McCracken, Bradley Fienen, and
Robert Vaughan (collectively,
"Respondents") in Newton County Circuit Court for
alleged violations of Missouri's Criminal Asset
Forfeiture Act ("CAFA"), unjust enrichment, and
money had and received. Appellant's allegations stemmed
from an incident that occurred in November 2013, when Neosho
police -- in response to a disturbance call at
Appellant's home -- arrested Appellant and seized
firearms he had in his possession.
was subsequently convicted of being a felon in possession of
a firearm, and he was sentenced by a federal court to serve
36 months in the United States Bureau of Prisons. The weapons
seized from Appellant's home were then forfeited pursuant
to a federal order.
the course of his civil suits against Respondents, Appellant
filed a "Motion for Summary Judgment and Memorandum of
Law In Support" ("motion for summary
judgment"), which the trial court denied. That same day,
respondents Fienen and McCracken filed their "MOTION
FOR JUDGMENT ON THE PLEADINGS" ("motion for
judgment on the pleadings") that claimed Appellant's
causes of action were not supported by the averments of his
petition and were time-barred by a three-year statute of
limitation. Soon thereafter, Respondent Vaughan also filed a
"Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings and
Suggestions in Support" asserting that
Appellant's amended petition failed to state a claim.
June 22, 2018 "ORDER FOR JUDGMENT ON THE
PLEADINGS[, ]" the trial court granted
Respondents' motions for judgment on the pleadings and
accordingly entered judgments in their favor.
first point claims "[t]he trial court erred in not
granting Appellant [sic] Motion for Summary Judgment."
We need not discuss the fatal briefing deficiencies related
to this claim as "[t]he denial of a motion for summary
judgment is not an appealable order because it is not
final." Keystone Mut. Ins. Co. v. Kuntz, 507
S.W.3d 162, 166 (Mo. App. S.D. 2016). An exception to this
rule exists "where the merits of the motion for summary
judgment are intertwined with the propriety of an appealable
order granting summary judgment to another party."
Hazelwood Logistics Ctr., LLC v. Illinois Union Ins.
Co., 535 S.W.3d 802, 804 (Mo. App. E.D. 2017) (quoting
Sauvain v. Acceptance Indem. Ins. Co., 339 S.W.3d
555, 568 (Mo. App. W.D. 2011)). Appellant makes no claim that
that exception is applicable here. The denial of
Appellant's motion for summary judgment cannot be
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remainder of Appellant's brief is "so replete with
Rule 84.04[ violations that we are unable to review
[his] appeal." Hometown Bank, N.A. v. Yer Yang,
432 S.W.3d 806, 807 (Mo. App. S.D. 2014). "Failure to
comply with the briefing requirements under Rule 84.04
preserves nothing for appellate review." Carden v.
Missouri Intergovernmental Risk Mgmt. Ass'n, 258
S.W.3d 547, 554 (Mo. App. S.D. 2008).
"We are mindful of the problems that a pro se litigant
faces; however, judicial impartiality, judicial economy, and
fairness to all parties necessitate that we do not grant a
pro se appellant preferential treatment with regard to
complying with the rules of appellate procedure."
Carlisle v. Rainbow Connection, Inc., 300 S.W.3d
583, 584-85 (Mo. App. E.D. 2009). "Pro se appellants are
held to the same standards as attorneys and must comply with
Supreme Court rules, including Rule 84.04, which ...