Dodson v. United States, 12070.

CourtUnited States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (6th Circuit)
Writing for the CourtMARTIN, McALLISTER and STEWART, Circuit
Citation215 F.2d 196
PartiesDODSON et al. v. UNITED STATES.
Docket NumberNo. 12070.,12070.
Decision Date16 August 1954

215 F.2d 196 (1954)

DODSON et al.

No. 12070.

United States Court of Appeals Sixth Circuit.

August 16, 1954.

215 F.2d 197

James H. Polsgrove, Louisville, Ky. (Frances E. Bauman, Louisville, Ky., on the brief), for appellants.

Rhodes Bratcher, Asst. U. S. Atty., Louisville, Ky. (J. Leonard Walker, U. S. Atty., Louisville, Ky., on the brief), for appellee.

Before MARTIN, McALLISTER and STEWART, Circuit Judges.

STEWART, Circuit Judge.

The defendants in this criminal case, three men and three women all connected by a family relationship,1 were tried by a jury under an indictment containing three counts. The first two counts charged all six defendants with separate conspiracies to commit an offense against the United States, 18 U.S.C.A. § 371, namely, the Mann Act, 18 U.S.C.A. § 2421; the third count charged four of the defendants with the substantive offense of violating the Mann Act.

At the conclusion of the evidence, the court directed verdicts of not guilty as to Mildred Rose Roberts under count one, Russell Dodson and Marvin Voelker under count two, and Marvin Voelker under count three, but refused the other motions of each of the defendants for directed verdicts of not guilty under all counts of the indictment. Except for those defendants for whom a not guilty verdict was directed, the jury found each of them guilty as charged, and they have appealed.

It will be necessary to consider each count of the indictment separately.

First Count

Under the first count of the indictment Woodrow and Delores Lewis, Marvin and Marion Voelker, and Russell Dodson were convicted of a conspiracy to commit an offense against the United States between January 1 and April 30, 1951. Considering the evidence in the light most favorable to the government, as we must, Henderson v. United States, 6 Cir., 1953, 202 F.2d 400; Ross v. United States, 6 Cir., 1952, 197 F.2d 660, certiorari denied 344 U.S. 832, 73 S.Ct. 40, 97 L.Ed. 648, the jury were warranted in finding the following facts:

Woodrow and Delores Lewis lived in Tateville, near Somerset in the Eastern

215 F.2d 198
District of Kentucky. The Voelkers lived in Louisville, in the Western District of Kentucky. Some time in February, 1951, the Lewises were in Memphis, Tennessee. Lewis contacted Voelker in Louisville, and the latter agreed to drive to Memphis with Mrs. Voelker, which he did. The Lewises and the Voelkers occupied adjoining rooms in a Memphis hotel on February 16 and 17. Then they all returned to Kentucky in two automobiles. Dodson accompanied the Voelkers on this trip

The following month, the two couples drove in their separate automobiles from Kentucky to Charlotte, North Carolina, with Dodson this time a passenger of the Lewises. In early March they stayed in the same hotel in Charlotte, the Lewises and the Voelkers occupying adjoining rooms for two nights, and Dodson a room with an unidentified woman for a week. The Lewises and the Voelkers returned to their homes in Kentucky, and Dodson returned separately by bus.

In April the Lewises and the Voelkers again set out in their separate automobiles from Kentucky to Augusta, Georgia. The Voelkers had their four year old son with them. Dodson did not accompany them. Somewhere in Tennessee the Voelkers had an automobile accident, and the rest of the journey to Augusta was made in the Lewises' automobile. The party took a circuitous route to Augusta, stopping for at least one night at hotels in Charlotte and Asheville, North Carolina, and Spartanburg, South Carolina, and they arrived in Augusta on April 13, where they registered at a hotel.

There was evidence that on this trip Delores Lewis and Marion Voelker engaged in prostitution at the hotel in Charlotte, that Marion Voelker did so in Asheville, and that Delores Lewis did so and Marion Voelker at least attempted to do so in Augusta. There was further evidence that the party usually occupied adjoining rooms, the men often occupying one room and the women the other, and that the men and women were never seen together around the hotel. On more than one occasion fictitious names and addresses were used in registering at the hotels.

The government thus relied upon circumstantial evidence to prove the conspiracy, as in law it may and in fact it often must. Glasser v. United States, 1942, 315 U.S. 60, 80, 62 S.Ct. 457, 86 L.Ed. 680; Ledford v. United States, 6 Cir., 1946, 155 F.2d 574, certiorari denied 329 U.S. 733, 67 S.Ct. 96, 91 L.Ed. 634; Van Huss v. United States, 10 Cir., 1952, 197 F.2d 120. Upon this evidence, we cannot hold that the jury were not warranted in finding, as they did, that Voelker conspired with Lewis during the period covered by the indictment to transport the two women in interstate commerce for the purpose of prostitution.

Appellants contend that it was necessary to prove that the conspiracy itself was formed in the Western District of Kentucky in order to invest the trial court with jurisdiction. That is not the law. A prosecution for conspiracy may be maintained in any federal district where an overt act was committed in furtherance thereof. Hyde v. United States, 1912, 225 U.S. 347, 32 S.Ct. 793, 56 L.Ed. 1114; United States v. Cohen, 3 Cir., 1952, 197 F.2d 26; United States v. Bazzell, 7 Cir., 1951, 187 F.2d 878, 884, certiorari denied 342 U.S. 849, 72 S.Ct. 73, 96 L.Ed. 641; Davis v. United States, 5...

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8 cases
  • State v. Graziani, A--168
    • United States
    • New Jersey Superior Court – Appellate Division
    • June 29, 1959
    ...United States v. Falcone, 109 F.2d 579 (2 Cir. 1940), affirmed 311 U.S. 205, 61 S.Ct. 204, 85 L.Ed. 128 (1940); Dodson v. United States, 215 F.2d 196 (6 Cir. There is absent here any direct proof of the existence of an agreement among these defendants to obtain money by Page 51 means of fal......
  • Calhoun v. Superior Court In and For San Diego County
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court (California)
    • December 30, 1955
    ...v. Purcell (conspiracy to play poker) 304 Ill.App. 215, 26 N.E.2d 153; Dodson v. United States (conspiracy to violate Mann Act) 6 Cir., 215 F.2d 196; United States v. Hagan (conspiracy to harbor fugitive), D.C., 27 F.Supp. The third count of the indictment is, apparently, based upon the fac......
  • U.S. v. Fleming, s. 74-1112-74-1115
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (7th Circuit)
    • October 23, 1974
    ...States v. Gardner, 475 F.2d 1273, 1277 (9th Cir. 1973), cert. denied, 414 U.S. 835, 94 S.Ct. 178, 38 L.Ed.2d 70; Dodson v. United States, 215 F.2d 196, 200 (6th Cir. 1954); United States v. Fox, 130 F.2d 56, 57 (3rd Cir. 1942), cert. denied, 317 U.S. 666, 63 S.Ct. 74, 87 L.Ed. 535. Precisel......
  • United States v. Horton, Crim. A. No. 20893.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 3th Circuit. United States District Court (Eastern District of Pennsylvania)
    • March 2, 1962
    ...follow that venue lies only in the district from which she set out. In support of his position defendant cites Dodson v. United States, 215 F.2d 196 (6th Cir. 1954). That case affords defendant little comfort, since it involved a conspiracy. The court there held that the district from which......
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