Pond v. People

CourtSupreme Court of Michigan
Writing for the CourtCampbell J.:
Citation8 Mich. 150
PartiesAugustus Pond v. The People
Decision Date12 May 1860

8 Mich. 150

Augustus Pond
v.
The People

Supreme Court of Michigan

May 12, 1860


Heard April 24, 1860; April 25, 1860; April 26, 1860 [8 Mich. 151] [Syllabus Material] [8 Mich. 152] [Syllabus Material] [8 Mich. 153] [Syllabus Material] [8 Mich. 154] [Syllabus Material] [8 Mich. 155] [Syllabus Material] [8 Mich. 156] [Syllabus Material] [8 Mich. 157] [Syllabus Material] [8 Mich. 158] [Syllabus Material] [8 Mich. 159] [Syllabus Material] [8 Mich. 160] [Syllabus Material] [8 Mich. 161] [Syllabus Material] [8 Mich. 162] [Syllabus Material] [8 Mich. 163] [Syllabus Material] [8 Mich. 164] [Syllabus Material] [8 Mich. 165] [Syllabus Material] [8 Mich. 166] [Syllabus Material] [8 Mich. 167] [Syllabus Material] [8 Mich. 168] [Syllabus Material] [8 Mich. 169] [Syllabus Material] [8 Mich. 170] [Syllabus Material] [8 Mich. 171] [Syllabus Material] [8 Mich. 172]

Error to the district court of the upper peninsula, for the county of Mackinac.

The plaintiff in error was tried on an information for the murder of one Isaac Blanchard, and convicted of manslaughter.

Upon the trial, as appears from the bill of exceptions, the following facts were proved: The homicide was committed on the 18th day of June, 1859, at Seul Choix, a point of land in Delta county, which is attached to Mackinac county for judicial purposes, extending about a mile into lake Michigan, and situate near its northern extremity about seventy-five miles from Mackinac. It was inhabited by a considerable population, who were here engaged in the business of fishing. Their houses and other buildings stood in a line near to and following the shore of the lake. Amongst these were the house and premises of the prisoner, where he was carrying on the business of fishing, and was living with his wife and three young children, one of whom was a young infant, and the eldest a daughter 12 years old, together with two hired men, named Daniel Whitney and Dennis Cull. It was a long building about 16 feet square, contained but one room, and had a bark-roof, and only one window, and but one door, made of boards, which was fastened to the building with leather hinges, and opened outward; and upon the inside was fastened and kept closed by means of a rope attached to it and a pin near the side of the door, around which the rope was drawn and made fast.

Thirty-six feet distant from the prisoner's house was another building of the prisoner, called a net-house. This was constructed with six posts set in the ground, having plates upon their top, and the whole was inclosed with boards an inch or an inch and a quarter thick, nailed on the sides to the posts, and on the roof nailed to the plates, and to a ridge-pole. The joints of the roof were also covered with bark, and the bark held in its place by poles extending from one end to the other. It had a board floor, and but one door, which opened directly opposite to the door of the prisoner's house. This door was made of boards, was fastened to the building with leather hinges, and upon the inside was closed and fastened by the same means and arrangement as the door of the prisoner's house above described. It also had a latch. The net-house was about sixteen feet long and fourteen feet wide; contained but one room, had a berth constructed about two and a half feet high, for the purposes of a bedstead, in the end of the building opposite that containing the door, which berth was large enough to accommodate two persons comfortably, and on which the prisoner's two hired men, Whitney and Cull, had slept regularly, up to the time of the homicide, during their employment with the prisoner, the former having been in his service two weeks, and the latter one week immediately preceding. They took their regular meals with the prisoner's family in his house, and lived as members of his family. Two of the three persons engaged in the transactions leading to and immediately connected with the homicide, David Plant and Isaac Blanchard, jr., the deceased, resided also at Seul Choix point, near its foot, at a place called the Harbor, Plant about a mile, and Blanchard about three-fourths of a mile from the prisoner's house. The other, Joseph Robilliard, resided near the end of the point, and not far from the prisoner's premises.

On Thursday, at about noon, of the same week when the homicide occurred, Plant, in the presence of said Blanchard, at the house of one Downey, situate on the point, threatened in conversation with Mrs. Downey that he must whip the prisoner or there would be a fracas. This threat was heard by the young daughter of the prisoner, who happened to be passing near at the time, and who immediately went home and communicated the threat to her mother, who thereupon immediately awakened the prisoner, he being then asleep on a bed, and communicated the threat to him in these words: "My little girl says in passing Mr. Downey's, she heard Plant say he was going to whip you." This was about 1 o'clock P. M. On the evening of the same day, at about 8 o'clock, an assembling of from fifteen to twenty persons occurred on the point, a few rods from the prisoner's house, and between the houses of Joseph Martell and a Mr. Durocher, which were about one hundred feet apart. The larger part of these persons resided at the harbor, and between the harbor and the point. They had, as Mary Pond, a witness for the prisoner, testified, been hunting for the prisoner, and had overtaken him near Durocher's house. Jerry Williams, a witness for the people, testified that he was one of the company; that he had been on board a vessel in the bay, and was returning towards the harbor; that he came there with a party of persons, and there met another party, and he could not say how many persons were present, nor how long they remained there.

In the company were Plant, Robilliard and the deceased. The prisoner was got into the company by Plant, who had called him out of Joseph Martell's house. They were sitting all around the prisoner, engaged in conversation. They surrounded him. Their proceedings thus far were observed by the prisoner's daughter, who was secreted behind Durocher's house, in order to look at them and see what they would do to her father, and she then left, and went home and reported them to her mother. Whilst the company was so assembled, Plant told the prisoner that he did not use his neighbors right; that he ought not to pitch on to men not of his size and abuse them; that if the prisoner wanted to fight anybody, he had better take a man of his size. There was no evidence of any provocation on the part of Pond by words or acts. Plant then struck the prisoner in his face with his fist--the prisoner's hat at the same time falling off--and then kicked him in his breast. The prisoner did nothing more than pick up his hat and put it on again. Then they drank whisky together, furnished by Blanchard. In a short time the prisoner, as Mary Pond expressed it, "got clear of the company." At first, as stated by other witnesses, he walked off, and then was seen running away alone into the woods. About 9 or 10 o'clock on the same evening, Plant, Robilliard and Blanchard came to the door of the prisoner's net-house. The prisoner's two hired men, Whitney and Cull, were then asleep therein, and when they went to bed that evening, the door was fastened to the building upon its hinges, and it was closed and fastened as usual on the inside by means of the rope above described, which was make fast around a pin or nail near the side of the door.

Whitney was awakened by the walking of Plant on the floor, and he then saw the door lying outside on the ground, torn from its hinges, and the pin or nail that had held the rope was also broken. Plant first went up to the bed, took hold of Whitney's arm and asked who he was. Whitney told him, and then Plant said "you are not the man." Plant then asked where the prisoner was. Whitney replied "at Joseph Martell's." Robilliard and Blanchard remained outside near the door of the net-house. This was after dark. Plant did not explain to Whitney what he wanted of the prisoner. They then went to the door of the prisoner's house; Plant opened it. They wanted the prisoner; Plant asked where he was; his wife replied "I do not know; go and see on board the little vessel." Plant said, "We have been there, and he was not there; we must have him absolutely; we have got business with him." She replied, "What business have you? It is just as well to say it to me as to him; what do you want to do with him? Say it to me and I will tell him." They said, "No, we must have him to-night; we do not wish to tell you; we will tell him," and they then went away towards the point to hunt for him. When they came to the door there were about twenty persons behind the house.

Just after this occurrence the prisoner came home, stayed from five to ten minutes, went away, and slept all night at the house of a near neighbor, Joseph Martell. Between ten and eleven o'clock the same evening, Plant, Robilliard, and the deceased, went to the house of Thomas Ward after he had gone to bed, but for what purpose was not shown.

On the next day, Friday, the prisoner was away from home most of the day, and Whitney saw him but once or twice. He came to the house of Joseph Martell on that day, between ten and eleven o'clock in the forenoon, to get his pistol, saying he wanted it for his hired man. He obtained it, carried it away, but it was not loaded and had no lock.

On the same day, about noon, Plant and the deceased were in company near the house of Peter Closs; the prisoner was also present, and then the deceased was standing about one hundred feet off. Plant was heard to make threats against the prisoner. Plant said to the prisoner, "It is a good while since you have had a grudge against me; I must whip you to satisfy myself." Plant went near to the prisoner and told him not to say anything; if he did he would give him slaps, or...

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121 practice notes
  • State v. George, 1180
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Wyoming
    • December 23, 1924
    ...L. 714; the search was a violation of constitutional rights; Boyd v. U.S. 29 L.Ed. 746; State v. Bugg, (Kans.) 72 P. 236; Bond v. People, 8 Mich. 150; Ivey v. State, 61 Ala. 58; Youman v. Com., (Ky.) 224 S.W. 860; U. S. v. Kraus, 270 F. 578; State v. Court, (Mont.) 198 P. 362; People v. Mar......
  • People v. Deneweth, Docket No. 3085
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Michigan (US)
    • December 2, 1968
    ...Clark (1967), 5 Mich.App. 672, 147 N.W.2d 704. 8 'A criminal intent is a necessary ingredient of every crime.' Pond v. The People (1860), 8 Mich. 150, 174. (The defendant was charged with murder and convicted of 'At common law, a crime required two elements: an act and an evil intention. Th......
  • People v. Riddle, Docket No. 118181, Calendar No. 1.
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Michigan
    • July 31, 2002
    ...denied his request for a "no duty to retreat" instruction. The Court of Appeals panel examined this Court's decisions in Pond v. People, 8 Mich. 150 (1860), and People v. Lilly, 38 Mich. 270 (1878), and held that defendant had a duty to retreat if safely possible before exercising deadly fo......
  • State v. Rader
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Oregon
    • December 23, 1919
    ...give our attention to precedents which were unaffected by and were decided upon rules of the [94 Or. 478] common law. In Pond v. People, 8 Mich. 150, Mr. Justice Campbell, one of America's really great judges, said: "The danger to be resisted must be to life, or serious bodily harm of a per......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
121 cases
  • State v. George, 1180
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Wyoming
    • December 23, 1924
    ...L. 714; the search was a violation of constitutional rights; Boyd v. U.S. 29 L.Ed. 746; State v. Bugg, (Kans.) 72 P. 236; Bond v. People, 8 Mich. 150; Ivey v. State, 61 Ala. 58; Youman v. Com., (Ky.) 224 S.W. 860; U. S. v. Kraus, 270 F. 578; State v. Court, (Mont.) 198 P. 362; People v. Mar......
  • People v. Deneweth, Docket No. 3085
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Michigan (US)
    • December 2, 1968
    ...Clark (1967), 5 Mich.App. 672, 147 N.W.2d 704. 8 'A criminal intent is a necessary ingredient of every crime.' Pond v. The People (1860), 8 Mich. 150, 174. (The defendant was charged with murder and convicted of 'At common law, a crime required two elements: an act and an evil intention. Th......
  • People v. Riddle, Docket No. 118181, Calendar No. 1.
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Michigan
    • July 31, 2002
    ...denied his request for a "no duty to retreat" instruction. The Court of Appeals panel examined this Court's decisions in Pond v. People, 8 Mich. 150 (1860), and People v. Lilly, 38 Mich. 270 (1878), and held that defendant had a duty to retreat if safely possible before exercising deadly fo......
  • State v. Rader
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Oregon
    • December 23, 1919
    ...give our attention to precedents which were unaffected by and were decided upon rules of the [94 Or. 478] common law. In Pond v. People, 8 Mich. 150, Mr. Justice Campbell, one of America's really great judges, said: "The danger to be resisted must be to life, or serious bodily harm of a per......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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