Murray v. State, 30

Decision Date22 October 1957
Docket NumberNo. 30,30
Citation135 A.2d 314,214 Md. 383
PartiesCharles MURRAY and Joseph Collins, v. STATE of Maryland.
CourtMaryland Court of Appeals

Marvin Mandel, Baltimore (Louis H. Fried and Ginsberg & Ginsberg, Baltimore, on the brief), for appellants.

Joseph S. Kaufman, Asst. Atty. Gen. (C. Ferdinand Sybert, Atty. Gen. and J. Harold Grady, State's Atty. and John C. Weiss, Asst. State's Atty., Baltimore, on the brief), for appellee.


BRUNE, Chief Judge.

The defendants, Murray and Collins, appeal from their conviction and sentence for larceny of a wallet, belonging to one Corbin, of a value of under $100. Code 1951, Art. 27, § 406, as amended by Acts of 1952, Ch. 18. They contend that the evidence is insufficient to sustain their conviction, which was by a judge sitting without a jury in the Criminal Court of Baltimore. The indictment contained a count for robbery, on which the defendants were acquitted. The actual value of the wallet was trivial and there was no money in it, but there were some personal papers in it which belonged to Corbin.

The offense of which the defendants were convicted occurred at about 7:30 P.M. on Sunday, November 11, 1956, on Baltimore Street at or near the Fallsway. This is a well lighted area. Corbin had been drinking 'right smart' (to use his own phrase), and one of the defendants, Murray, testified that Corbin was staggering. The defendants engaged Corbin in apparently friendly conversation, which Murray says was about Corbin getting home safely in view of his condition. While they were talking, Sergeant Glover, of the Baltimore Police Department, drove up in a Department car headed west on Baltimore Street and pulled up to the curb. He knew both of the defendants. There was testimony by Murray that Collins greeted the Sergeant and that they talked about some case in which the officer was interested and Collins was a witness. The Sergeant testified that the defendants walked away from Corbin, that he drove around the block, came back and parked on the other side of the street at a point where he could observe Corbin and the defendants, that he saw Collins step up behind Corbin and take hold of him and that he saw Murray take something from Corbin's pocket, go to a nearby lot and start to look into something. The Sergeant further testified that he then crossed the street and told the defendants to halt, that they were under arrest; that Collins did not move, but Murray started to walk away, that the Sergeant pursued Murray and the latter then dropped Corbin's wallet. The defendant Murray took the stand and contradicted much of the Sergeant's testimony.

Collins did not testify; but Sergeant Glover testified that in response to a question as to what he was doing, Collins replied: 'once a thief, always a thief. When you fool around you expect to get caught.' In response to a further question as to whose idea it was, Collins replied, according to Sergeant Glover's testimony: 'When thieves travel together, it is both their idea.' Collins' statements were not considered by the trial judge as evidence against Murray, but as admissible only against Collins.

In this Court the appellants argued that there was no evidence of lack of consent on the part of Corbin to the taking of his wallet, and hence that the crime of larceny was not proven. We find no force in this contention.

Section 406 of Art. 27 of the Code 1951, as amended, under which the defendants were prosecuted, provides that, 'If any person shall steal, take or carry away personal goods of another under the value of one hundred dollars and being thereof convicted he shall be deemed...

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9 cases
  • Jones v. State
    • United States
    • Maryland Court of Appeals
    • 1 Septiembre 1984
    ...if not otherwise provided by the prosecutor, was deemed obtainable through a bill of particulars. As we observed in Murray v. State, 214 Md. 383, 386, 135 A.2d 314 (1957), the word "steal" means to take property feloniously or to appropriate property without right. In common parlance, to st......
  • Hobby v. State
    • United States
    • Maryland Court of Appeals
    • 24 Enero 2014
    ...warrant, of the personal property of another with the unlawful intention to deprive the owner of such property.” Murray v. State, 214 Md. 383, 386, 135 A.2d 314, 315 (1957) (citation and internal quotation marks omitted) (emphasis added). “[M]odern [theft] statutes [, however,] have general......
  • Hobby v. State
    • United States
    • Court of Special Appeals of Maryland
    • 24 Enero 2014
    ...warrant, of the personal property of another with the unlawful intention to deprive the owner of such property." Murray v. State, 214 Md. 383, 386, 135 A.2d 314, 315 (1957) (citation and internal quotation marks omitted) (emphasis added). "[M]odern [theft] statutes[, however,] have generall......
  • State v. Coleman
    • United States
    • Maryland Court of Appeals
    • 15 Diciembre 2011
    ...and benefits of ownership.”) (citing U.S. v. Turley, 352 U.S. 407, 411, 77 S.Ct. 397, 399, 1 L.Ed.2d 430 (1957)); Murray v. State, 214 Md. 383, 386, 135 A.2d 314, 315 (1957) (“Theft is defined as [a] crime consisting in the intentional taking, without legal warrant, of the personal property......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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