Fitzpatrick v. United States

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search


Fitzpatrick v. United States by Henry Billings Brown
Syllabus
Court Documents

United States Supreme Court

178 U.S. 304

Fitzpatrick  v.  United States

 Argued: April 30, 1900. --- Decided: May 28, 1900

This was a writ of error to review the conviction of Fitzpatrick, who was jointly indicted with Henry Brooks and William Corbett for the murder of Samuel Roberts, on March 13, 1898, at Dyea, in the territory of Alaska.

The indictment, omitting the formal parts, was as follows:

The said John Fitzpatrick, Henry Brooks, and William Corbett, at near Dyea, within the said district of Alaska, and within the jurisdiction of this court, and under the exclusive jurisdiction of the United States, on the 13th day of March, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and ninety-eight, did unlawfully, wilfully, knowingly, feloniously, purposely, and of deliberate and premeditated malice make an assault upon one Samuel Roberts; and that they, the said John Fitzpatrick, Henry Brooks, and William Corbett, a certain revolver, then and there charged with gunpowder and leaden bullets, which said revolver they, the said John Fitzpatrick, Henry Brooks, and William Corbett, in their hands then and there had and held, then and there feloniously, purposely, and of deliberate and premeditated malice did discharge and shoot off to, against, and upon the said Samuel Roberts; and that said John Fitzpatrick, Henry Brooks, and William Corbett with one of the bullets aforesaid out of the revolver aforesaid then and there by force of the gunpowder aforesaid by the said John Fitzpatrick, Henry Brooks, and William Corbett, discharged and shot off as aforesaid then and there feloniously, purposely, and deliberate and premeditated malice did strike, penetrate, and wound him, the said Samuel Roberts, in and upon the right breast of him, the said Samuel Roberts, then and there with the leaden bullet aforesaid so as aforesaid discharged and shot out of the revolver aforesaid by the said John Fitzpatrick, Henry Brooks, and William Corbett, in and upon the right breast of him the said Samuel Roberts one mortal wound, of which said mortal wound he, the said Samuel Roberts, instantly died; and so the grand jurors duly selected, impaneled, sworn and charged as aforesaid upon their oaths do say: That said John Fitzpatrick, Henry Brooks, and William Corbett did then and there kill and murder the said Samuel Roberts in the manner and form aforesaid, contrary to the form of the statutes in such cases made and provided, and against the peace and dignity of the United States of America. Burton E. Bennett,

U.S. District Attorney.

After a demurrer to the indictment, which was overruled, and a motion for a continuance, which was denied, Brooks and Corbett moved and obtained an order for separate trials. The court thereupon proceeded to the trial of Fitzpatrick, the jury returning a verdict of guilty 'without capital punishment.' Motions for a new trial and in arrest of judgment were entered, heard, and overruled, and defendant sentenced to hard labor for life in the penitentiary at San Quentin, California. To review such judgment a writ of error was sued in forma pauperis.

Messrs. A. B. Browne, Alex. Britton, and Julius Kahn for plaintiff in error.

Solicitor General Richards for defendant in error.

Mr. Justice Brown delivered the opinion of the court:

Notes[edit]

This work is in the public domain in the United States because it is a work of the United States federal government (see 17 U.S.C. 105).