Page v. State, 47938

CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
Citation295 So.2d 279
Docket NumberNo. 47938,47938
PartiesSam P. PAGE, Jr. v. STATE of Mississippi.
Decision Date27 May 1974

Page 279

295 So.2d 279
Sam P. PAGE, Jr.
STATE of Mississippi.
No. 47938.
Supreme Court of Mississippi.
May 27, 1974.

Page 280

W. S. Moore, Julie Ann Epps, Jackson, Clyde Ratcliff, McComb, for appellant.

A. F. Summer, Atty. Gen., by William D. Boerner, Sp. Asst. Atty. Gen., Jackson, for appellee.

BROOM, Justice:

Appellant, Page, appeals after being convicted of the sale of marijuana. Trial was in the Circuit Court of Pike County, where appellant was sentenced to serve three years in the state penitentiary and pay a fine of $1,000. We affirm.

Briefly stated, the record shows that appellant was convicted upon the testimony of one Cockerham, an undercover agent. Cockerham revealed that he purchased a lid of marijuana from appellant, using his own funds which were later refunded to him by the sheriff. Other salient facts will be stated as the different legal propositions before us are discussed.


Appellant contends he was denied due process because of the pre-indictment and pre-trial delays. The date of the offense was August 14, 1971, and on March 21, 1972 the indictment was returned. Appellant voluntarily surrendered to the sheriff on December 6, 1972 and was tried on April 5, 1973. A simple delay between the date of an offense and the date of an indictment is not per se reversible error, especially where (as in this case) the delay is to conceal the identity of an undercover agent for a reasonable period of time so that he may continue to effectively work as such an agent. United States v. Judice, 457 F.2d 414 (5th Cir. 1972).

Upon the facts and circumstances of this case, the lapses of time between the commission of the offense, date of indictment, and the trial are not reversible error. The four-way balancing test applicable here was articulated in Barker v. Wingo, 407 U.S. 514, 92 S.Ct. 2182, 33 L.Ed.2d 101 (1972) and adopted by this Court in Wells

Page 281

v. State, 288 So.2d 860 (Miss. 1974) cf. Cummings v. State, 219 So.2d 673 (Miss. 1969). In Barker, supra, the high court stated that the balancing test should be applied in each individual case in order to determine if the right to a speedy trial has been violated.

Before applying the balancing test to the record before us, we should determine at what juncture the appellant had the right to object to any further delay prior to trial. According to United States v. Marion, 404 U.S. 307, 92 S.Ct. 455, 30 L.Ed.2d 468 (1971), the right is not available until an indictment is returned, the accused is arrested, or a showing at the trial is made that undue prejudice resulted from the government's delay. We have already determined that the delay between the night of the sale and the date of the indictment was justifiable. It was also within the two year time frame set forth in Mississippi Code Annotated section 99-1-5 (1972) during which prosecutions may be commenced. Therefore, the appellant's right to a speedy trial as regards delay of prosecution could have accrued no earlier than the date of the return of the indictment.

We now apply the four factors set out in Barker, supra, and Wells, supra. First, the length of the delay was slightly over a year from the time of the indictment until trial date. Second, the reason for the delay, as testified to by...

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24 cases
  • Beckwith v. State, 91-IA-1207
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
    • December 16, 1992
    ...v. State, 288 So.2d 860 (Miss.1974); Macon v. State, 295 So.2d 742 (Miss.1974); Myers v. State, 296 So.2d 695 (Miss.1974); Page v. State, 295 So.2d 279 (Miss.1974); Edmond v. State, 312 So.2d 702 (Miss.1975); Campbell v. State, 309 So.2d 172 (Miss.1975); Harrington v. State, 336 So.2d 721 (......
  • Hughes v. State, 97-DP-00028-SCT.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
    • March 31, 1999
    ...Shearer v. State, 423 So.2d 824, 826 (Miss.1982)); Coleman v. State, 697 So.2d 777, 784 (Miss. 1997) (citations omitted); Page v. State, 295 So.2d 279, 282 (Miss.1974)(citing Clanton v. State, 279 So.2d 599 ¶ 84. Here the issue was whether Mrs. Hughes Sanders had been, in fact, improperly i......
  • Manning v. State, 95-DP-00066-SCT.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
    • June 25, 1998 the accused, this Court will not reverse his ruling." Shearer v. State, 423 So.2d 824, 826 (Miss.1982)(citing Page v. State, 295 So.2d 279 (Miss.1974)). "The discretion of the trial court must be exercised within the boundaries of the Mississippi Rules of Evidence." Johnston, 567 So.2d a......
  • Byrom v. State, 2001-DP-00529-SCT.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
    • October 16, 2003 the accused, this Court will not reverse his ruling. Shearer v. State, 423 So.2d 824, 826 (Miss.1983), citing Page v. State, 295 So.2d 279 Parker v. State, 606 So.2d 1132, 1136 (Miss.1992). All the evidence and inferences that defense counsel sought to introduce through admission of this......
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