Moorer v. State, No. 18190

CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
Writing for the CourtTAYLOR; Appellant appeals from a denial of his writ of habeas corpus by the Honorable John Grimball
Citation244 S.C. 102,135 S.E.2d 713
PartiesLouis MOORER, Appellant, v. The STATE of South Carolina, Ellis C. MacDougall, Director of the Department of Corrections, State of South Carolina, and R. F. Goodman, Warden, South Carolina State Penitentiary, Respondents.
Docket NumberNo. 18190
Decision Date30 March 1964

Page 713

135 S.E.2d 713
244 S.C. 102
Louis MOORER, Appellant,
v.
The STATE of South Carolina, Ellis C. MacDougall, Director
of the Department of Corrections, State of South
Carolina, and R. F. Goodman, Warden,
South Carolina State
Penitentiary, Respondents.
No. 18190.
Supreme Court of South Carolina.
March 30, 1964.

Page 714

[244 S.C. 104] Moore & Brown, Benjamin L. Cook, Jr., Charleston, for appellant.

[244 S.C. 105] Daniel R. McLeod, Atty. Gen., E. N. Brandon, Asst. Atty. Gen., Columbia, Julian S. Wolfe, Sol., Orangeburg, for respondents.

TAYLOR, Chief Justice.

Appellant appeals from a denial of his writ of habeas corpus by the Honorable John Grimball, Judge of the Fifth Judicial Circuit.

On April 4, 1962, Louis Moorer, a Negro, was convicted of the offense of rape in the Court of General Sessions for Dorchester County and sentenced to death as provided by the laws of the State of South Carolina. The conviction and sentence were affirmed by this Court on January 21, 1963. State v. Moorer, 241 S.C. 487, 129 S.E.2d 330. Appellant served notice of intention to petition the Supreme Court of the United States for a writ of certiorari and for this purpose was granted a 90 day stay. The appeal to the United States Supreme Court was abandoned just prior to the expiration of the stay, and Appellant petitioned Judge Grimball for a writ of habeas corpus on May 14, 1963.

It was alleged in the petition that Moorer's constitutional rights had been violated in that Negroes had been systematically excluded by reason of their race from the Grand Jury which returned the indictment and from the Petit Jury before[244 S.C. 106] which he was tried and convicted. It was also alleged that at the time of his arraignment on April 2, 1962, before the Court of General Sessions for Dorchester County, Moorer was not represented by counsel, advised of his right to be so represented, and that no counsel was appointed to represent him. It was further alleged that no record was made of the fact that he was arraigned and his plea to the indictment was not recorded and was not made a part of the record of his trial. This petition was denied, after a hearing, on May 17, 1963, and Appellant served notice of appeal. At a subsequent hearing to settle the record Judge Grimball, with the consent of all parties, directed that another hearing be held to determine if Appellant had a preliminary hearing prior to his trial and, if so, whether there were any grounds therein for relief under habeas corpus. This supplemental hearing was held on August 30, 1963, and Judge Grimball issued an Order holding Appellant had established no further grounds for the issuance of a writ of habeas corpus. This appeal is from both Orders of Judge Grimball.

Page 715

The first question for determination raised by the exceptions is whether, as claimed by Appellant, Negroes have been systematically excluded by reason of their race from the Grand Jury and Petit Jury of Dorchester County. No motion was made at Appellant's trial on April 4, 1962, to quash the indictment returned by the Grand Jury or to quash the venire of Petit Jurors in attendance on the grounds that Negroes were systematically excluded by reason of their race from serving as jurors.

In State v. Waitus, 224 S.C. 12, 77 S.E.2d 256, and State v. Middleton, 207 S.C. 478, 36 S.E.2d 742, this Court reviewed the constitutional and statutory law of this State relating to the qualifications of jurors and the method of selecting them. Each juror is required to be a qualified male elector between the ages of 21 and 65 years and of good moral character. The Grand Jury shall consist of 18 members and the Petit Jury shall consist of 12 men [244 S.C. 107] all of whom must agree to a verdict in order to render the same. Article 5, Section 22, Constitution of South Carolina. The term 'qualified elector' means 'registered elector.' State v. Rector, 158 S.C. 212, 155 S.E. 385; State v. Grant, 199 S.C. 412, 19 S.E.2d 638; State v. Waitus, 224 S.C. 12, 77 S.E.2d 256.

Every registered male elector is a potential and duly qualified juror, and his name may be taken from the Registrations Books by the Jury Commission. State v. Waitus, 224 S.C. 12, 77 S.E.2d 256. The Jury Commissioners are Auditor, Treasurer, and Clerk of Court, Section 38-51, Code of Laws of South Carolina, 1962, and by statute they are required to prepare from the official enrollment books of qualified electors a list containing not less than two-thirds of the electors they deem qualified for jury duty. Section 38-52, Code of Laws of South Carolina, 1962. In Dorchester County, this list is prepared between March 1 and March 15 of each year. Section 38-52.2, Code of Laws of South Carolina, 1962. The Jury Commissioners are required by Section 38-55 to place the name of each person on said list on a separate sheet of paper, each paper to resemble the others as much as possible, and, after folding, to insert same in a container or capsule. These containers or capsules are then placed in what is known as a 'jury box.'

In this State it is only required that 12 new men be drawn once a year to serve as Grand Jurors and they, together with 6 hold-over members drawn by lot from the previous Grand Jury, constitute the Grand Jury for that year. Sections 38-401 to 38-405, Code of Laws of South Carolina, 1962. In Dorchester County prior to 1962, the Jury Commissioners were required to draw from the jury box 36 Petit Jurors to serve for each week the Court is in Session, Sections 38-61 and 38-61.1. In 1962, Section 38-61.1 was amended to require the Jury Commissioners of Dorchester County to draw 46 Petit Jurors.

[244 S.C. 108] As stated in State v. Waitus, supra, 224 S.C. 12, 77 S.E.2d 256, 'There is certainly no denial of the equal protection of...

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16 practice notes
  • State v. Council, No. 24932.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
    • April 5, 1999
    ...concerned by the admission of appellant's statements. His sixth amendment right to counsel attached at his arraignment, Moorer v. State, 244 S.C. 102, 135 S.E.2d 713 (1964), and then again at the time of his polygraph examination. State v. Grizzle, 293 S.C. 19, 358 S.E.2d 388 (1987). In my ......
  • Bostick v. State, No. 18426
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
    • November 30, 1965
    ...apprehension to the time of appointment of counsel, thereby rendering his confession inadmissible. In the recent case of Moorer v. State, 244 S.C. 102, 135 S.E.2d 713, this Court had under consideration the question of whether Negroes had been systematically excluded from the Grand and Peti......
  • State v. Hyman, No. 21524
    • United States
    • South Carolina Supreme Court
    • July 22, 1981
    ...on the basis that voter registration lists are the most representative source of a community. See 80 A.L.R.3d 869; Moorer v. State, 244 S.C. 102, 135 S.E.2d 713 (1964); Swain v. Alabama, 380 U.S. 202, 85 S.Ct. 824, 13 L.Ed.2d 759 (5) Appellant asserts the trial court erred in holding a witn......
  • State v. Johnson, No. 71-780
    • United States
    • Ohio Supreme Court
    • July 19, 1972
    ...a qualified elector eligible for jury selection in Ohio are not themselves unusual or unreasonable. See, also, Moorer v. State (1964), 244 S.C. 102, 135 S.E.2d 713, certiorari denied, 379 U.S. 860, 85 S.Ct. 119, 13 L.Ed.2d 63; Wheeler v. State (1953), 219 Miss. 129, 63 So.2d 517, certiorari......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
16 cases
  • State v. Council, No. 24932.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
    • April 5, 1999
    ...concerned by the admission of appellant's statements. His sixth amendment right to counsel attached at his arraignment, Moorer v. State, 244 S.C. 102, 135 S.E.2d 713 (1964), and then again at the time of his polygraph examination. State v. Grizzle, 293 S.C. 19, 358 S.E.2d 388 (1987). In my ......
  • Bostick v. State, No. 18426
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
    • November 30, 1965
    ...apprehension to the time of appointment of counsel, thereby rendering his confession inadmissible. In the recent case of Moorer v. State, 244 S.C. 102, 135 S.E.2d 713, this Court had under consideration the question of whether Negroes had been systematically excluded from the Grand and Peti......
  • State v. Hyman, No. 21524
    • United States
    • South Carolina Supreme Court
    • July 22, 1981
    ...on the basis that voter registration lists are the most representative source of a community. See 80 A.L.R.3d 869; Moorer v. State, 244 S.C. 102, 135 S.E.2d 713 (1964); Swain v. Alabama, 380 U.S. 202, 85 S.Ct. 824, 13 L.Ed.2d 759 (5) Appellant asserts the trial court erred in holding a witn......
  • State v. Johnson, No. 71-780
    • United States
    • Ohio Supreme Court
    • July 19, 1972
    ...a qualified elector eligible for jury selection in Ohio are not themselves unusual or unreasonable. See, also, Moorer v. State (1964), 244 S.C. 102, 135 S.E.2d 713, certiorari denied, 379 U.S. 860, 85 S.Ct. 119, 13 L.Ed.2d 63; Wheeler v. State (1953), 219 Miss. 129, 63 So.2d 517, certiorari......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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