227 U.S. 245 (1913), 842, Johnson v. Hoy

Docket NºNo. 842
Citation227 U.S. 245, 33 S.Ct. 240, 57 L.Ed. 497
Party NameJohnson v. Hoy
Case DateFebruary 03, 1913
CourtUnited States Supreme Court

Page 245

227 U.S. 245 (1913)

33 S.Ct. 240, 57 L.Ed. 497




No. 842

United States Supreme Court

February 3, 1913

Argued January 7, 8, 1913




The writ of habeas corpus is not intended to serve the office of a writ of error even after verdict, and, for stronger reasons, is not available before trial except in rare and exceptional cases.

Page 246

The orderly course of a trial should be pursued and usual remedies exhausted even where petitioner attacks the constitutionality of the act under which he is held. Glagsow v. Moyer, 225 U.S. 420.

Where petitioner bases his petition on the round that excessive bail is required, and, before decision on the writ, furnishes the bail, as the court can only grant the same relief that the writ was intended to afford, the appeal from the judgment denying the writ must be dismissed.

The facts are stated in the opinion.

LAMAR, J., lead opinion

MR. JUSTICE LAMAR delivered the opinion of the Court.

On November 7, 1912, Johnson was indicted for a violation of the White Slave Traffic Act (June 25, 1910, 36 Stat. 825, c. 395). He was arrested, and the court fixed his bail at $30,000, but declined to accept as surety anyone who was indemnified against loss, or to permit the defendant to deposit cash in lieu of bond. The defendant thereupon applied for a writ of habeas corpus on the ground (1) that excessive bail was required, on terms onerous and prohibitive, and (2) that the act under which he had been indicted was unconstitutional and void. After a hearing, the petition was denied, and he appealed to this Court, where a motion was made that he be admitted to bail pending the hearing. This was resisted by the Solicitor General, and, before a decision thereon, was abandoned. On appellant's motion, the case was advanced to be heard with others involving the constitutionality of the same act. The defendant's counsel took part in the argument of that question, January 6, 1913. From an affidavit attached to the brief of the government, submitted at that time, it appears

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that, on November 15, 1912, Johnson had given bond, which had been approved by the district judge, and had been released from arrest under the indictment. The petitioner insists that the release on bail was known to the government when the motion to advance was made, and, not then having been...

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