Mrous v. State

Decision Date25 March 1893
PartiesMROUS v. STATE.
CourtTexas Court of Criminal Appeals

Appeal from district court, Bexar county; G. H. Noonan, Judge.

Alex Mrous was convicted of the seduction of Tina Gorzell under promise of marriage, and appeals. Reversed.

Jay Minter and Geo. C. Altgelt, for appellant. R. L. Henry, Asst. Atty. Gen., for the State.


Appellant was convicted of the seduction, under promise of marriage, of one Tina Gorzell, and sentenced to a fine of $2,000, from which he appeals to this court.

1. Appellant complains that the court erred in permitting the prosecutrix to testify, because the crime, if any, occurred before the 14th of July, 1891, at which time the act took effect permitting the seduced female to testify, and the action of the court above stated was retroactive and ex post facto in its nature, in violation of the constitution. Of course it is not contended that the crime itself is thereby changed or aggravated, or a greater punishment inflicted. The only ground upon which the objection is based is that it required less evidence to convict by permitting the seduced woman to testify. If this is true, it would be ex post facto. Calder v. Bull, 3 Dall. 389; Murray v. State, 1 Tex. App. 428; Holt v. State, 2 Tex. 363; Dawson v. State, 6 Tex. 347. It is certainly difficult to understand how opening new sources of light, or increasing the means of proving or detecting crime, can be said to require less evidence, or become ex post facto. In Hopt v. Utah, 110 U.S. 574,1 the supreme court of the United States declared a statute which enlarges the class of persons who may be competent as witnesses not ex post facto in its application to offenses previously committed. It does not attach criminality to any act previously done, aggravate past crimes, or increase punishment therefor; nor does it alter the degree or lessen the amount or measure of the proof necessary for conviction. Removing restrictions upon the competency of certain classes of persons as witnesses relates to modes of procedure only, in which no one can be said to have a vested right, and which the state, on grounds of public policy, may regulate at pleasure. Laughlin v. Com., 13 Bush, 261. The objection is not well taken.

2. The appellant objects to the charge of the court to the effect that, if the jury believe that defendant and Tina Gorzell were well acquainted with each other, and the defendant, knowing the character of the said Tina Gorzell in...

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29 cases
  • Moore v. State
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
    • 6 Abril 1925
    ......The scope. of its power in this regard is best pointed out by reference. to decided cases. Carothers v. Hurley (1866), 41. Miss. 71; Hopt v. Utah (1884), 110 U.S. 574;. Thompson v. Missouri (1897), 171 U.S. 380; Cooley on. Constitutional Limitations, ch. 9, p. 272; Mrous v. State. (Tex.), 21 S.W. 764; Dunning v. West (La. 1899), 25 So. 306; Burke v. Putman (Iowa 1901), 84. N.W. 1035; Katz v. Eldredge (N. J. 1921), 118 A. 247; People v. Johnson (N. Y. 1906), 77 N.E. 1164;. People v. Braun (Ill. 1910), 92 N.E. 917. [138 Miss. 142] . . . ......
  • Knight v. State
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of Texas. Court of Criminal Appeals of Texas
    • 17 Enero 1912
    ...she would not be the subject of seduction, and yet the decisions of this court incline to that rule in Texas. Mrous v. State, 31 Tex. Cr. R. 599, 21 S. W. 764, 37 Am. St. Rep. 834; Simmons v. State, 54 Tex. Cr. R. 625, 114 S. W. 841. This case illustrates the workings of such a rule. If Mis......
  • Carmell v Texas, 987540
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • 1 Mayo 2000
    ......The court held that applying the 1993 amendment retrospectively did not violate the Ex Post Facto Clause, and the State Court of Criminal Appeals denied review. . . Held: Petitioner's convictions on the counts at issue, insofar as they are not corroborated by other ...Territory of Utah, 110 U.S. 574 (1884). See Mrous v. State, 31 Tex. Crim. App. 597, 21 S. W. 764 (1893). The corroboration requirement for seduction prosecutions, recodified in 1965 at Tex. Code ......
  • State v. Kavanaugh.
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of New Mexico
    • 16 Mayo 1927 the possible disadvantage of an accused. Hopt v. Utah, 110 U. S. 574, 4 S. Ct. 202, 28 L. Ed. 262; Mrous v. State, 31 Tex. Cr. Rep. 599, 21 S. W. 764, 37 Am. St. Rep. 835. ‘That decision,’ observed the Supreme Court of Indiana, with reference to Kring v. Missouri, ‘does not go to the ext......
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