Smith v. United States

CourtUnited States Supreme Court
Writing for the CourtWAITE
Citation94 U.S. 97,24 L.Ed. 32
Decision Date01 October 1876
PartiesSMITH v. UNITED STATES

94 U.S. 97
24 L.Ed. 32
SMITH
v.
UNITED STATES.
October Term, 1876

ERROR to the Supreme Court of Washington Territory.

Mr. John J. McGilvra for the plaintiff in error.

Mr. Solicitor-General Phillips, contra.

Mr. CHIEF JUSTICE WAITE delivered the opinion of the court.

It is clearly within our discretion to refuse to hear a criminal case in error, unless the convicted party, suing out the writ, is where he can be made to respond to any judgment we may render. In this case it is admitted that the plaintiff in error has escaped, and is not within the control of the court below, either actually, by being in custody, or constructively, by being out on bail. If we affirm the judgment, he is not likely to appear to submit to his sentence. If we reverse it and order a new trial, he will appear or not, as he may consider most for his interest. Under such circumstances, we are not inclined to hear and decide what may prove to be only a moot case.

This cause was docketed here Dec. 29, 1870. In due time a brief was filed on behalf of the plaintiff in error, and the cause has been regularly continued at every term since, no one appearing here in person to represent the plaintiff. At this term we dismissed the writ, on motion of the United States, for want of prosecution, but have since reinstated it on motion of the counsel for the plaintiff in error, who now moves to have it set down for argument. This motion we deny, and order

Page 98

that, unless the plaintiff in error submit himself to the jurisdiction of the court below on or before the first day of our next term, the cause be left off the docket after that time. The People v. Genet, 59 N. Y. 80; Leftwich's Case, 20 Gratt. 723; Commonwealth v. Andrews, 97 Mass. 544; see also 31 Me. 592.

Motion to set down the case for argument denied.

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234 practice notes
  • Dorrough v. Estelle, No. 73-1881.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (5th Circuit)
    • July 29, 1974
    ...24 L.Ed.2d 586; Bonahan v. Nebraska, 1887, 125 U.S. 692, 8 S.Ct. 1390, 31 L. Ed. 854; Smith v. United States, 1876, 94 U.S. (4 Otto) 97, 24 L.Ed. 32. Nor do we find fault with the Texas statute for providing for the immediate dismissal of appeals of escapees. Such a practice may be administ......
  • Polanski v. Superior Court, No. B217290.
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals
    • December 21, 2009
    ...271, 277 [89 P.2d 382].) The disentitlement doctrine is equally venerable on the federal level. In 1876, in Smith v. United States (1876) 94 U.S. 97 [24 L.Ed. 32], the United States Supreme Court declared, "It is clearly within our discretion to refuse to hear a criminal case in error, unle......
  • Prevot, In re, Nos. 94-5854
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (6th Circuit)
    • September 7, 1995
    ...Supreme Court's denial of its processes for a fugitive's appeal to the Court from his conviction in Washington Territory. Smith v. U.S., 94 U.S. 97, 24 L.Ed. 32 (1876). The Court drew upon earlier state cases. Smith was followed by Bonahan v. Nebraska, 125 U.S. 692, 8 S.Ct. 1390, 31 L.Ed. 8......
  • U.S. v. Forty-Five Thousand Nine Hundred Forty Dollars ($45,940) in U.S. Currency, FORTY-FIVE
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (2nd Circuit)
    • July 11, 1984
    ...in the statute under which Molinaro appeals, 28 U.S.C. Sec. 1257(2), we conclude, in light of the Smith [v. United States, 40 to 97, 94 U.S. 97, 24 L.Ed. 32 (1876) ] and Bonahan [v. Nebraska, 125 U.S. 692, 8 S.Ct. 1390, 31 L.Ed. 854 (1887) ] decisions, that the Court has the authority to di......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
233 cases
  • Dorrough v. Estelle, No. 73-1881.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (5th Circuit)
    • July 29, 1974
    ...24 L.Ed.2d 586; Bonahan v. Nebraska, 1887, 125 U.S. 692, 8 S.Ct. 1390, 31 L. Ed. 854; Smith v. United States, 1876, 94 U.S. (4 Otto) 97, 24 L.Ed. 32. Nor do we find fault with the Texas statute for providing for the immediate dismissal of appeals of escapees. Such a practice may be administ......
  • Polanski v. Superior Court, No. B217290.
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals
    • December 21, 2009
    ...271, 277 [89 P.2d 382].) The disentitlement doctrine is equally venerable on the federal level. In 1876, in Smith v. United States (1876) 94 U.S. 97 [24 L.Ed. 32], the United States Supreme Court declared, "It is clearly within our discretion to refuse to hear a criminal case in error, unle......
  • Prevot, In re, Nos. 94-5854
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (6th Circuit)
    • September 7, 1995
    ...Supreme Court's denial of its processes for a fugitive's appeal to the Court from his conviction in Washington Territory. Smith v. U.S., 94 U.S. 97, 24 L.Ed. 32 (1876). The Court drew upon earlier state cases. Smith was followed by Bonahan v. Nebraska, 125 U.S. 692, 8 S.Ct. 1390, 31 L.Ed. 8......
  • U.S. v. Forty-Five Thousand Nine Hundred Forty Dollars ($45,940) in U.S. Currency, FORTY-FIVE
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (2nd Circuit)
    • July 11, 1984
    ...in the statute under which Molinaro appeals, 28 U.S.C. Sec. 1257(2), we conclude, in light of the Smith [v. United States, 40 to 97, 94 U.S. 97, 24 L.Ed. 32 (1876) ] and Bonahan [v. Nebraska, 125 U.S. 692, 8 S.Ct. 1390, 31 L.Ed. 854 (1887) ] decisions, that the Court has the authority to di......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
1 books & journal articles
  • ELIMINATING THE FUGITIVE DISENTITLEMENT DOCTRINE IN IMMIGRATION MATTERS.
    • United States
    • Notre Dame Law Review Vol. 97 Nbr. 3, March 2022
    • March 1, 2022
    ...is dedicated to the memory of Professor Christopher N. Lasch, mentor-lawyer-teacher-friend extraordinaire. (1) See Smith v. United States, 94 U.S. 97 (1876); Allen v. Georgia, 166 U.S. 138 (2) Degen v. United Suites, 517 U.S. 820, 824 (1996). (3) Technically, the process of raising a challe......

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