People v. Szymanski, 71.

Citation321 Mich. 248,32 N.W.2d 451
Decision Date18 May 1948
Docket NumberNo. 71.,71.
CourtSupreme Court of Michigan

321 Mich. 248
32 N.W.2d 451


No. 71.

Supreme Court of Michigan.

May 18, 1948.

Appeal from Recorder's Court of Detroit; Joseph A. Gillis, judge.

Anthony Szymanski was convicted of taking indecent liberties with the person of a nine-year-old girl without committing or intending to commit the crime of rape, and he appeals.

Judgment affirmed.

[32 N.W.2d 452]

Before the Entire Bench.

William Cohen and George W. Miller, both of Detroit for defendant and appellant.

Edmund E. Shepherd, Sol. Gen., of Lansing, and James N. McNally, Pros. Atty., and Robert Newton Smiley and Mark Friedman, Asst. Pros. Attys., all of Detroit, for the People.

CARR, Justice.

Defendant was convicted in the recorder's court for the city of Detroit of the crime of taking indecent liberties with the person of a nine year old girl, without committing or intending to commit the crime of rape, in violation of Act No. 328, § 336, Pub.Acts 1931, Comp.Laws Supp.1940, § 17115-336, Stat.Ann. § 28.568. The information filed in the case alleged that the offense was committed on the 26th day of May, 1945, in the city of Detroit. It was the claim of the prosecution on the trial that the conduct charged against defendant occurred in a certain theater on the afternoon of the date alleged. Defendant's testimony discloses that he was 26 years of age at that time. Trial by jury was waived and the case was heard before the court. Defendant has appealed from the verdict and sentence.

It is claimed on behalf of defendant that the evidence in the case was insufficient to establish with the requisite degree of certainty that the offense charged was actually committed. The statute cited provides:

‘Any male person or persons over the age of sixteen years, who shall assault a female child under the age of sixteen years, and shall take indecent and improper liberties with the person of such child, without committing or intending to commit the crime of rape upon such child, shall be guilty of a felony.’

The child against whom the offense is claimed to have been committed, herein referred to as the complaining witness, testified that she entered the theater in company with a younger sister and another girl ten years of age. The children sat together and the youngest fell asleep. A man, claimed by the people to have been defendant, sat down beside the complaining witness. In describing the alleged offensive conduct, she further testified:

‘As soon as he moved in and sat down, he put his hand up my dress. I think I told Adrien to move over, so she did; then I moved over a seat and he moved over a seat, too. He put his hand on the bare skin of my leg, but he didn't move his hand very high, though, up my dress or whatever it was I was wearing. I didn't tell Adrien why I wanted her to move over until after I got out of the show because I was scared. I was so scared I didn't know what to do. He did it until the show was over, I guess, and then I went out with Adrien in a hurry and I told her; then I went home and told my mother, and my mother came back with Adrien.’

It is argued by defendant's counsel that the conduct described in the testimony quoted was not sufficient to constitute the offense defined by the statute. Reliance is placed on language found in the opinion of this Court in People v. Hicks, 98 Mich. 86, 56 N.W. 1102. There the defendant was charged with the crime of taking indecent liberties with the person of a female child, and the child against whom the offense was claimed to have been committed gave testimony similar in character to that of the complaining witness in the instant case. However, in the Hicks case, the child's mother was permitted to detail a conversation in which the child made statements indicating that defendant had taken more objectionable liberties with her person than her...

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45 cases
  • People v. Wolfe
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Michigan
    • August 31, 1992
    ...50 Mich. 239, 242, 15 N.W. 101 (1883); see also People v. Chesbro, 300 Mich. 720, 723, 2 N.W.2d 895 (1942); People v. Szymanski, 321 Mich. 248, 254, 32 N.W.2d 451 (1948). In short, when determining whether sufficient evidence has been presented to sustain a conviction, a court must view the......
  • People v. Reese
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Michigan
    • May 14, 2012
    ...4 (emphasis added), further supports this conclusion. 89.MCR 2.613(C); Robinson, 475 Mich. at 5, 715 N.W.2d 44. 90.People v. Szymanski, 321 Mich. 248, 253, 32 N.W.2d 451 (1948). 91.Mendoza, 468 Mich. at 536, 664 N.W.2d 685. 92. We do not disturb the Court of Appeals' affirmation of defendan......
  • People v. Jones
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Michigan (US)
    • May 2, 1977
    ..."conduct that is of such character that the common sense of society regards it as indecent and improper". People v. Szymanski, 321 Mich. 248, 252, 32 N.W.2d 451, 453 (1948). Thus the two offenses fail to satisfy the test provided in Jones for determining whether a defendant is entitled to i......
  • People v. Major, Docket Nos. 9666
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Michigan (US)
    • June 23, 1971
    ...This Court will not substitute its judgment on the credibility of a witness for that of the trier of fact. People v. Szymanski (1948), 321 Mich. 248, 32 N.W.2d 451; People v. Williams (1966), 3 Mich.App. 272, 142 N.W.2d 43. The trial court, sitting as the trier of fact at the hearing, chose......
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