State v. Mcadams, 13509.

Citation166 S.E. 405
Decision Date10 November 1932
Docket NumberNo. 13509.,13509.
PartiesSTATE. v. McADAMS et al.
CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of South Carolina

166 S.E. 405

McADAMS et al.

No. 13509.

Supreme Court of South Carolina.

Nov. 10, 1932.

Appeal from General Sessions Circuit Court of Abbeville County; C. J. Ramage, Judge.

J. R. McAdams, C. B. Matthews, and Felton Lancaster were charged in one count with

[166 S.E. 406]

conspiracy to forcibly steal and certain overt acts in pursuance thereof, and in another count with conspiracy to forcibly steal and assault with intent to kill in pursuance thereof, and the State elected to proceed on the first count as charging conspiracy to commit robbery, and the second count as charging assault and battery with intent to kill. Defendant McAdams was convicted on the first count and convicted of simple assault on the second count, and the other defendants were convicted on both counts, and all defendants appeal.


J. M. Nickles and James P. Nickles, both of Abbeville, for appellants.

H. S. Blackwell, Sol., of Laurens, and W. P. Greene, of Abbeville, for the State.


The defendants, McAdams, Matthews, and Lancaster, along with two others, Kelley and Jamison, were indicted at the January, 1932, term of court of general sessions for Abbeville county. They were charged in the first count of the indictment with conspiracy to commit robbery, housebreaking, and felonious assault, and in the second count with conspiracy to steal and with assault and battery with intent to kill. Jamison and Kelley were not put on trial. The jury found Matthews and Lancaster guilty on both counts, and McAdams guilty on the first count and guilty of simple assault on the second count. Each of these defendants, after the presiding judge had refused a motion for a new trial, was sentenced to imprisonment for a period of five years. They now come to this court on appeal.

Before the appellants were arraigned, their counsel made a motion to quash the indictment, as to both the first and second counts, on the ground of "multiplicity or duplicity of charges" in each of the counts. This motion was overruled. Counsel for the appellants then stated that they desired to have an understanding with the solicitor as to what the defendants were charged with, in response to which the solicitor announced: "We are going to trial on the first count, conspiracy to commit robbery; second count, assault and battery with intent to kill."

The appellants now complain that the court was in error in refusing their motion to quash the indictment on the ground stated, for the reason that they were unable to know or determine the exact crime with which they were charged or how to defend or answer against the charges made.

We have carefully read the indictment. In brief, the first count charges that the defendants conspired and confederated together to forcibly steal the money and goods of the prosecutrix, and that, in pursuance of such conspiracy, they did break and enter her home and assault her with intent to steal and carry away her goods and chattels. The second count charges that the defendants conspired and agreed together to forcibly steal the goods and chattels of the prosecutrix, and that, in pursuance of such conspiracy, they committed an assault upon her with intent to kill her. The state contends that it does not necessarily follow that by reason of the allegations as to the overt acts actually committed, any additional charge was made in the indictment upon which the defendants might be put on trial.

Testimony for the state tended to show that the defendants resided in the city of Atlanta, Ga., and that the conspiracy alleged in the indictment was entered into in that city; that three trips were made to Abbeville, S. C, in pursuance of the alleged conspiracy, the defendant McAdams accompanying some of the others on the first trip; that on the last trip the defendants, except McAdams, entered the home of the prosecutrix and undertook to open a...

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