People ex rel. Joyce v. Strassheim

CourtSupreme Court of Illinois
Writing for the CourtCARTWRIGHT
Citation90 N.E. 118,242 Ill. 359
PartiesPEOPLE ex rel. JOYCE v. STRASSHEIM, Sheriff, et al.
Decision Date10 December 1909

242 Ill. 359
90 N.E. 118

STRASSHEIM, Sheriff, et al.

Supreme Court of Illinois.

Dec. 10, 1909.

Petition for habeas corpus by the People, on the relation of Joseph A. Joyce, against Christopher C. Strassheim, Sheriff, and others. Relator remanded.

[242 Ill. 360]Thomas D. Knight, Frank R. Reid, Elwood G. Godman, and Frank L. Hatch (John Byrne and Daniel J. Ward, of counsel), for petitioner.

W. H. Stead, Atty. Gen., Joel C. Fitch, and Charles E. Woodward (Wells M. Cook, of counsel), for respondents.


The relator, Joseph A. Joyce, presented to us his petition for a writ of habeas corpus, wherein he alleged: That on November 6, 1908, he was released by the State Board of Pardons from the Illinois state penitentiary, to which he had been sentenced for the crime of forgery; that he was so released on parole as an employé of Thomas H. Joyce at the Auditorium Hotel, in Chicago; that on May 12, 1909, the warden of said penitentiary issued an order reciting that he had been conditionally paroled, as aforesaid, and had violated the condition of his parole, wherefore it was ordered that he be retaken and returned forthwith to the penitentiary; that he was imprisoned and restrained of his liberty by virtue of such order by the respondents, Christopher C. Strassheim, sheriff of Cook county, and William Davies, keeper of the common jail of said county; that he had not violated his parole and had not been found guilty of violating the same; and that he had not had a hearing of any kind to ascertain whether he had violated the conditions of the parole or any opportunity for a hearing and determination of that question. He alleged that the act under which he was sentenced, commonly called the parole act, entitled ‘An act to revise the law in relation to the sentence and commitment of prisoners convicted of crime, and providing for a system of parole, and to provide[242 Ill. 361]compensation for the officers of said system of parole,’ in force July 1, 1899 (Laws 1899, p. 142), is unconstitutional and void as a whole, for the reasons that it contains more than one subject, both in its title and body, in violation of section 13 of article 4 of the Constitution, and contains appropriations for the pay of parole agents and the board of pardons, in violation of section 16 of said article; and also that section 4 of said act is unconstitutional and void for the reason that it gives the warden power to retake and reimprison a paroled prisoner without a trial or hearing of any kind whether the conditions of the parole have been violated, whereby such prisoner is deprived of his liberty without due process of law, in violation of the Constitution of this state and the Constitution of the United States. The writ was ordered and issued, and the respondents made returns setting forth the judgment of conviction of the relator and his commitment to the penitentiary, the rules and regulations established by the

[90 N.E. 119]

board of pardons and the agreement entered into by the relator under which he was paroled, and alleged that on and after April 1, 1909, he violated said agreement by failing and neglecting to make a written report to the warden on the 1st day of April for the previous month, and failing to make such report on the first day of each month afterward, and by leaving the employ of Thomas H. Joyce and going beyond the limits of this state without first obtaining permission of the warden to leave the employment, and that the warden thereupon determined that the relator had violated his parole agreement and issued the order for the arrest and delivery to him of the relator. The cause was argued and submitted for decision on the constitutional questions arising upon the petition and returns.

The first claim of counsel for the relator is that the parole act, as a whole, is unconstitutional and void. We had the question of the constitutionality of the original [242 Ill. 362]parole act, as passed and approved in 1895 (Laws 1895, p. 158), before us in the case of George v. People, 167 Ill. 447, 47 N. E. 741, and the act was then sustained; but various changes have since been made, and the objections to the act of 1899, now in force, did not then exist. These objections are that the act contains, both in its title and body, two subjects of legislation; one being the indeterminate sentence and parole system, and the other being the compensation for the officers of the system and appropriations therefor, and that the act is therefore void under section 13 of article 4 of the Constitution and the decisions of this court in Ritchie v. People, 155 Ill. 98, 40 N. E. 454,29 L. R. A. 79, 46 Am. St. Rep. 315, and Mathews v. People, 202 Ill. 389, 67 N. E. 28,63 L. R. A. 73, 95 Am. St. Rep. 241. A further basis of the claim is that sections 9 and 11 make appropriations for the salaries of the officers of the parole system, who are officers of the government, and therefore the act violates section 16 of said article 4, which provides that bills making appropriations for the salaries of officers of the government shall contain no provision on any other subject. These questions which counsel seek to raise concerning the validity of the entire act cannot be raised or considered in this proceeding by habeas corpus, since they do not affect the jurisdiction of the criminal court, in which the relator was convicted. The courts have uniformly held, in very numerous cases, that the writ of habeas corpus cannot be made to perform the functions of a writ of error or an appeal, and if the relator was sentenced under the provision of a void act that question could properly be raised on a writ of error. People v. Jonas, 173 Ill. 316, 50 N. E. 1051;People v. Murphy, 188 Ill. 144, 58 N. E. 984;People v. Murphy, 202 Ill. 493, 67 N. E. 226; 15 Am. & Eng. Ency. of Law (2d Ed.) 172; 21 Cyc. 284. No consideration therefore will be given to the argument that the act is unconstitutional and void as a whole.

It is next contended that section 4 of the act violates the Constitutions of this state and the United States, for the reason that it makes no provision for a hearing and determination whether the relator violated the conditions of [242 Ill. 363]his parole contract and the rules of the board of pardons relating thereto, and this is a question that could not have been raised on a writ of error upon the record of the relator's conviction and sentence. That section provides that the board of pardons shall have power to establish rules and regulations under which prisoners in the penitentiary may be allowed to go upon parole outside of the penitentiary building and enclosure. It also provides that all prisoners temporarily released upon parole shall at all times until the receipt of their final discharge be considered in the legal custody of the warden of the penitentiary from which they were paroled, and shall during the said time be considered as remaining under conviction for the crime of which they were convicted and sentenced and subject at any time to be taken back within the enclosure of said penitentiary. Full power to enforce the rules and regulations of the board of pardons and retake and reimprison any inmate upon parole is conferred upon the warden of the penitentiary, who may issue his order or writ for that purpose. It is made the duty of the warden, immediately upon the return of any conditionally released or paroled prisoner, to make report of the same to the board of pardons, giving the reasons for the return of the prisoner. Section 6 of the act provides for the final release and discharge of a prisoner who has faithfully served the term of his parole, if the board of pardons shall be of the opinion that he can be safely trusted to be at liberty, and that his final release...

To continue reading

Request your trial
27 cases
  • Williams v. Com.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts
    • May 17, 1966
    ...S.E.2d 402 (suspended sentence). Cross v. Huff, 208 Ga. 392, 398, 67 S.E.2d 124 (suspended sentence). People ex rel. Joyce v. Strassheim, 242 Ill. 359, 366--368, 90 N.E. 118 (parole). Murray v. Swenson, 196 Md. 222, 230--231, 76 A.2d 150 (conditional pardon). Hite v. State, 198 Md. 602, 605......
  • Ex parte Anderson
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Oregon
    • March 21, 1951
    ...right until he has served the sentence of not exceeding four years imposed upon him by the trial court.' In People ex rel. v. Strassheim, 242 Ill. 359, 90 N.E. 118, 120, the court said: 'Undoubtedly a prisoner on parole is still in the legal custody of the warden (Ughbanks v. Armstrong, 208......
  • People ex rel. Carlstrom v. Shurtleff, 21708.
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Illinois
    • February 14, 1934
    ...whether or not that court had jurisdiction and power to enter the order. People v. Zimmer, 252 Ill. 9, 96 N. E. 529;People v. Strassheim, 242 Ill. 359, 90 N. E. 118;People v. Superior Court, 234 Ill. 186, 84 N. E. 875,14 Ann. Cas. 753;People v. Murphy, 212 Ill. 584, 72 N. E. 902;People v. J......
  • Rose v. Haskins, 17809.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (6th Circuit)
    • January 5, 1968
    ...178 Va. 525, 17 S.E.2d 403 (1941) modified on other grounds, 179 Va. 442, 19 S.E.2d 705 (1942); People ex rel. Joyce v. Strassheim, 242 Ill. 359, 90 N.E. 118 (1909). The federal parole statute requires a hearing, 18 U.S.C. § 4207 (1951), as does the statute controlling the revocation of pro......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT