Hall v. State, No. 25237.

Docket NºNo. 25237.
Citation199 Ind. 592, 159 N.E. 420
Case DateJanuary 06, 1928
CourtSupreme Court of Indiana

199 Ind. 592
159 N.E. 420

HALL
v.
STATE.

No. 25237.

Supreme Court of Indiana.

Jan. 6, 1928.


Appeal from Superior Court, Elkhart County; Wm. B. Hile, Judge.

John Hall was convicted of murder while engaged in robbery, and he appeals. Affirmed.

[159 N.E. 421]


Frank E. Coughlin and Paul V. Paden, both of South Bend, for appellant.

Arthur L. Gilliom, Atty. Gen., and Edward J. Lennon, Jr., Dep. Atty. Gen., for the State.


MARTIN, J.

Appellant was indicted jointly with one Thomas O'Brien, alias Thomas Young, in three counts, the second of which charged the crime of murder while engaged in the perpetration of robbery. Appellant was tried separately by a jury, which returned a verdict of guilty upon the second count of the indictment, and fixed his punishment at death. Upon the verdict the court pronounced the judgment from which this appeal is taken.

The overruling of appellant's motion for a new trial is assigned as error. Sixty–seven reasons in support of this motion are given. Those relied upon here for reversal are: That the verdict is contrary to law, and is not sustained by sufficient evidence; that the court erred in compelling appellant to be shackled with leg irons during the trial; and that the court erred in admitting and excluding certain evidence, which will be hereinafter considered.

The appellant introduced no evidence at the trial. The facts shown by the state's

[159 N.E. 422]

witnesses are briefly as follows: The deceased, Louis C. Kreidler, who operated a drug store in South Bend, went to a bank at 9 a. m. Monday, March 26, 1926, to get money to cash checks at his store for employees of the Studebaker Corporation. At 9:15 a. m. just before Kreidler returned, the appellant, Hall, who at the time was 21 years old, and O'Brien “held up” the drug store. Hall entered first, and at the point of a revolver compelled Royal Gould, a young drug clerk, and Elva Collins, a customer, to hold up their hands and go into a back room, saying twice, “Get into the back room before I blow your head off.” There he went through their pockets and robbed them, taking from Gould a small .25 caliber automatic pistol, as well as his money.

O'Brien entered the store after Hall, and proceeded to rifle a cash register. William B. Shaffer, another customer, came in, and, mistaking O'Brien, who was at the cash register back of the soda fountain, for a clerk, asked for a bottle of ink. O'Brien compelled Shaffer to go into the back room, saying, “Get into the back room or I'll shoot you full of holes.”

Mr. Kreidler, returning to the store, and seeing O'Brien said, “What are you doing in that office?” O'Brien said, “Get in the back room with the rest of them.” A scuffle and fall ensued, a gun snapped, but did not fire. O'Brien called to Hall, “Come and help me.” Hall backed out of the room, where, at the point of a revolver, he was holding Gould, Collins, and Shaffer, and joined O'Brien.

Witnesses heard a scuffling, blows being struck, “something like a chair falling over,” or “like somebody had broken a box.” Witness Shaffer, from the back room, saw a motion at arm's length toward Kreidler, who was almost down, by “the man who had been in the rear of the store,” and “heard an awful crack” twice. Witness Collins said he then saw Hall open the cash register in the front part of the store (on the cigar counter) and take money. The witness then heard sounds of the men running out of the store. Mr. Kreidler jumped up, and followed the men out into the street, calling, “Hold up” or “Robbers” and “Help.” Kreidler had two or three wounds on his head and over his eye and bled profusely. One witness said he looked like some one had thrown a bucket of blood over his head. Dr. Walter H. Baker, a duly licensed physician 50 years of age, was called, and arrived in about ten minutes, and attended Mr. Kreidler. Dr. Baker cleansed the wounds on Kreidler's head, put on an antiseptic dressing, sent him home, a half–mile distant, in an automobile, and put him to bed. Thereafter he attended him every day. About five days after the robbery Kreidler began to run a fever, and the doctor found pus in his urine. He had swellings in his left foot, left great toe, and right ankle, chills, sweats, and a toxic appearance indicating a streptococcic septicæmia, or blood poisoning, which had developed from the injury to his skull. Dr. Baker gave a saline injection, supplied water and packs to his head to increase the drainage from the wound, and requested Dr. Harry L. Cooper, a licensed physician, who was a university graduate, with a hospital interne experience, and three years' practice of medicine, specializing in internal medicine, as a medical consultant to assist in the treatment of Mr. Kreidler. Kreidler was removed to a hospital on April 3d, was given a large amount of saline or salt solution and an intravenous injection of gentian violet and some aspirin. At the hospital he sank rapidly. The loss of blood at the time he was wounded reduced the vitality of Kreidler, who was 52 years old, and reduced his power of resistance against blood infection. There was an increase of temperature, which was down and up, to 106 degrees. He developed paralytic ileus, or paralysis of the bowels, and had acute suppression of the urine, caused by profound toxemia, or blood poisoning. He died on April 5, 1926.

Dr. Charles B. Crumpacker, a licensed physician and surgeon, graduate of several medical colleges, who had practiced medicine for 21 years, and had been coroner for 6 years, examined the body of Mr. Kreidler after his death, and, with Dr. M. W. Lyon, licensed physician and pathologist with an army and hospital experience, and ten years' practice of pathology, and Dr. Harry L. Cooper, performed or directed a post mortem operation, after the body had been treated by the undertakers. As coroner, Dr. Crumpacker reported the death as being caused by blood poisoning following a fractured skull; i. e. meningitis, inflammation of the brain, or blood poison, caused by some microorganism or germ which produced a general infection of the entire body.

Dr. Cooper stated that in his opinion the man died from an infected fracture of the skull, causing inflammation of the thin covering of the brain—the meninges. The fracture of the skull was circular in shape, and about the size of half a dollar. Both layers of the right frontal bone, the inner and outer tables, and the porous structure between the tables, were fractured; the inner break being larger than the outer. The fracture could not be noticed from observation, but would have been disclosed by an X–ray.

Mr. Kreidler was not rendered unconscious at the time Hall wounded him. Dr. Baker testified that he noticed no pus formation in or around the wound, and diagnosed the case as trauma of the skull, and neither Dr. Baker nor Dr. Cooper discovered that the skull was fractured until after the post mortem.

In addition to the positive identification of appellant by the two men (Gould and Collins) whom he held up and robbed in the back room of the store, there were other items

[159 N.E. 423]

of corroborating evidence, one of which was as follows:

After the robbery and assault on Mr. Kreidler, three pieces of the rubber grips of a revolver, one piece of which had the corner broken off, together with Kreidler's spectacles, were picked up from the drug store floor. When Hall and O'Brien were arrested, May 10, 1926, in the company of “Red” Prough, who admitted a long criminal and prison record, they had in their automobile shoes and dresses and a black leather Boston bag, which contained, among other things, wrenches, chisels, a jimmy, three flash–lights, ammunition, a large Colt's revolver, and two smaller revolvers. The large revolver was the same size as the gun used by Hall during the holdup, and its grips had been replaced with pieces of a cigar box held on by white adhesive tape. The pieces of rubber grips found in the drug store not only fitted this revolver, but the gun was tarnished at the place where the broken corner of the rubber grip was missing, and certain scratches on the gun and on the grip matched. Prough testified that he had furnished the pieces of cigar boxes and the tape, and that Hall and O'Brien had repaired the gun shortly after the date of the holdup.

The sheriff of Elkhart county testified that he found, between appellant's cell and the steel wall of the jail, a letter written by the appellant, with whose handwriting he was quite familiar. This letter, dated August 4, 1926, stated that Hall and O'Brien would go up for trial on September 27th; that “we may get the chair, the least we expect is life in Michigan City State Prison”; and that “Red Prough snitched on us, he sent us to the chair for a few old dollars that the state gave him, he turned on us.” (It appeared in evidence that a reward of $700 was offered for the capture and conviction of the Kreidler murderer.)

[1] Appellant insists that, under section 13, art. 1, of the Constitution (section 65, Burns' 1926), providing that “the accused shall have the right to a public trial by an impartial jury,” and section 15, art. 1, Constitution (section 67, Burns' 1926), providing that “no person arrested or confined in jail, shall be treated with unnecessary rigor,” it was error for the trial court to refuse to sustain in full his motion objecting “to the shackling and handcuffing, as well as the ankle bars on the defendant during the progress of the trial, and to any shackling of the defendant whatever, for the reason that it tends to prejudice the jury” against him.

The court, in ruling on appellant's motion, said:

“Let it appear on the record that, by virtue of the fact that the defendant had attempted to escape prison on at least one occasion, and that his codefendant did escape prison, and for the reason further that the defendant on one occasion secured the revolver of an officer while in prison, and shot the same, directed at the sheriff, and for the...

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29 practice notes
  • State v. Peacher, No. 14233
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of West Virginia
    • July 14, 1981
    ...during trial has traditionally been considered the method of security that least intrudes into the defendant's rights. In Hall v. State, 199 Ind. 592, 159 N.E. 420 (1928), the defendant was made to appear for his trial in shackles. In disapproving of the use of shackles the court said: "In ......
  • Gammage v. State, No. 04-81-00096-CR
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of Texas
    • January 13, 1982
    ...v. Burnett, 251 Cal.App.2d 651, 59 Cal.Rptr. 652 (1967); People v. Stabler, 202 Cal.App.2d 862, 21 Cal.Rptr. 120 (1962); Hall v. State, 199 Ind. 592, 159 N.E. 420 (1928); Tunget v. Commonwealth, 303 Ky. 834, 198 S.W.2d 785 (1946), cert. denied, 331 U.S. 833, 67 S.Ct. 1514, 91 L.Ed. 1847 (19......
  • People v. Roderman
    • United States
    • New York County Court
    • May 29, 1962
    ...but qualify the ruling with an admonition that as a matter of discretion, a 'liberally wide latitude' should be allowed (Hall v. State, 199 Ind. 592, 604-605, 159 N.E. 420) 17 A statement by one of the defendants that they had gone to the Grassy Point to 'break some backs' had reference to ......
  • State v. Long
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Oregon
    • May 21, 1952
    ...interfere with a fair and just decision of the question of the guilt or innocence of such prisoner.'' In Hall v. State, 199 Ind. 492, 159 N.E. 420, 423, the defendant was brought into court handcuffed and with ankle irons. The defendant moved for an order directing the removal of both. The ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
29 cases
  • State v. Peacher, No. 14233
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of West Virginia
    • July 14, 1981
    ...during trial has traditionally been considered the method of security that least intrudes into the defendant's rights. In Hall v. State, 199 Ind. 592, 159 N.E. 420 (1928), the defendant was made to appear for his trial in shackles. In disapproving of the use of shackles the court said: "In ......
  • Gammage v. State, No. 04-81-00096-CR
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of Texas
    • January 13, 1982
    ...v. Burnett, 251 Cal.App.2d 651, 59 Cal.Rptr. 652 (1967); People v. Stabler, 202 Cal.App.2d 862, 21 Cal.Rptr. 120 (1962); Hall v. State, 199 Ind. 592, 159 N.E. 420 (1928); Tunget v. Commonwealth, 303 Ky. 834, 198 S.W.2d 785 (1946), cert. denied, 331 U.S. 833, 67 S.Ct. 1514, 91 L.Ed. 1847 (19......
  • People v. Roderman
    • United States
    • New York County Court
    • May 29, 1962
    ...but qualify the ruling with an admonition that as a matter of discretion, a 'liberally wide latitude' should be allowed (Hall v. State, 199 Ind. 592, 604-605, 159 N.E. 420) 17 A statement by one of the defendants that they had gone to the Grassy Point to 'break some backs' had reference to ......
  • State v. Long
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Oregon
    • May 21, 1952
    ...interfere with a fair and just decision of the question of the guilt or innocence of such prisoner.'' In Hall v. State, 199 Ind. 492, 159 N.E. 420, 423, the defendant was brought into court handcuffed and with ankle irons. The defendant moved for an order directing the removal of both. The ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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