168 S.E. 204 (N.C. 1933), 89, State v. Carter

Docket Nº:89.
Citation:168 S.E. 204, 204 N.C. 304
Opinion Judge:STACY, Chief Justice.
Party Name:STATE v. CARTER.
Attorney:J. A. Pritchett and J. H. Matthews, both of Windsor, for appellant. Dennis G. Brummitt, Atty. Gen., and A. A. F. Seawell, Asst. Atty. Gen., for the State.
Case Date:March 08, 1933
Court:Supreme Court of North Carolina
 
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Page 204

168 S.E. 204 (N.C. 1933)

204 N.C. 304

STATE

v.

CARTER.

No. 89.

Supreme Court of North Carolina

March 8, 1933

Appeal from Superior Court, Bertie County; Frizzelle, Judge.

Andrew Carter was convicted of murder in the second degree, and he appeals.

Reversed.

Criminal prosecution tried upon indictment charging the defendant with the murder of his wife, Lottie Carter.

The record discloses:

(1) That Lottie Carter died at her home some time during the night of August 9, 1932. Her body was found the next morning about 7:30 o'clock, four to six hours after death. She was lying on the bed, partially covered with a sheet. Her infant child was playing on the bed beside her. She was in an advance stage of pregnancy--within about a week of confinement. There was blood under the pillow and on the bed. The deceased was purging some at the mouth and nose, and a small quantity of bloody fluid was oozing from her vagina. She was not in labor, and her body had apparently been placed on the bed. She could not have died, quietly and without moving, in the position she was in. On the afternoon before, the deceased had run some hogs out of the field, and had been warned by her father-in-law against such violent exercise.

(2) The coroner, who is a physician, testified that in his opinion a blow on the stomach, above the navel, caused the death of the deceased. On cross-examination, he testified that an autopsy was performed and "no bruises found inside the body." This was after the body had been embalmed.

(3) The defendant had, on two previous occasions, been indicted for assaulting his wife. He was away from home on the night in question. Returning around 11 o'clock and finding the door fastened with the button on the inside, according to his testimony, he went to his father's house, about 400 yards away, and spent the night. The next morning he pushed the door open, and, upon seeing his wife, jumped back and exclaimed: "Lord she is dead."

(4) The defendant did not view his wife's body after it had been removed to the undertaker's establishment.

Verdict: Guilty of murder in the second degree.

Judgment: Imprisonment in the state's prison at hard labor for a term of not less than eight nor more than ten years.

Defendant appeals, assigning errors.

J. A. Pritchett and J. H. Matthews, both of Windsor, for...

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