Commonwealth v. Byrd

CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of Pennsylvania
Citation112 A. 457
Decision Date14 February 1921
112 A. 457


Supreme Court of Pennsylvania.

Feb. 14, 1921.

Appeal from Court of Oyer and Terminer, Dauphin County; C. V. Henry, President Judge.

Charles Byrd, alias Willie Palmer, was sentenced to death on conviction of murder in the first degree, and he appeals. Affirmed.


Maurice R. Metzger and Mark T. Milnor, both of Harrisburg, for appellant.

Philip S. Moyer, Dist. Atty., of Harrisburg, for the Commonwealth.

PER CURIAM. Defendant has appealed from a sentence to death, on a conviction of murder in the first degree. He assigns for error only the final judgment and the refusal of the court below to grant him a new trial.

We have read the testimony. It plainly shows that the issues involved were for the jury, and the manner in which they were submitted is not formally complained of. Since the opinion of the learned court below fully covers the case we affirm on the following excerpts therefrom:

"Defendant and Duff Haygood lived in a workmen's camp at Locust Grove, near Steelton. Haygood was a janitor at this camp. On the night of November 13, this, there was some trouble * * * between a man named Jolly and defendant, in which Haygood took part. Defendant claimed that he was struck by Jolly and Haygood on this occasion, and that Haygood then said that, if defendant were large enough to fight, he (Haygood) would cut his throat. Defendant also testified that Jolly and Haygood followed him to another shanty and made an assault upon him; that he passed Haygood the following night, when neither spoke and nothing occurred. On the night of November 15th, both were in the pool room, and defendant left, according to his story, going to his own room, and, returning shortly thereafter, met Haygood and a man named Slim Evans. The witnesses for the commonwealth testified that Haygood said nothing and offered no violence toward defendant, but that defendant, without warning and without provocation, drew his revolver and shot Haygood.

Defendant testified that he came from his room with the revolver in his pocket and his hand upon the revolver; that, when he met Haygood and Evans, they separated, and he attempted to pass around Haygood, when Haygood grabbed his arms, and in the struggle defendant's hand closed on the revolver, and it was discharged; that he feared Haygood, and intended to shoot either Haygood or Evans....

To continue reading

Request your trial

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT