State v. Taylor

Citation35 S.W. 92,134 Mo. 109
PartiesSTATE v. TAYLOR et al.
Decision Date31 March 1896
CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of Missouri

Appeal from circuit court, Carroll county; W. W. Rucker, Judge.

William P. Taylor and another were convicted of murder, and appeal. Affirmed.

D. M. Wilson, Ralph F. Lozier, J. B. Hale, and Virgil Conkling, for appellants. R. F. Walker, Atty. Gen., Morton Jourdan, Asst. Atty. Gen., T. M. Bresnehen, J. L. Minnis, E. B. Fields, L. A. Holliday, B. F. Pierce, and Sidney Miller, for the State.


The defendants have appealed to this court, having been adjudged guilty of murder in the first degree. The indictment charges the crime to have been committed with a pistol on the body of one Gus Meeks, in Linn county, on the 10th day of May, 1894. As will be inferred from the place of trial, the venue was changed to Carroll county on application of defendants; the basis of their application being the alleged prejudice against them of the inhabitants of the counties of Linn, Sullivan, and Chariton. As preliminary to disclosing a sufficient portion of the evidence to a proper understanding of this cause, it becomes necessary to set forth the prominent features of the region of country where the occurrences to be presently related took place. Milan is the county seat of Sullivan county. It is situate on the Burlington & Kansas City Railroad, some 12 miles by rail, and 14 miles by wagon road, in nearly a north course, from Browning, a town on the south border of Linn county. Cora is a village on the same railroad, about midway between Browning and Milan. At Browning, defendant William P. (commonly called "Bill") Taylor lived; being a lawyer, and cashier of the People's Exchange Bank at that place. Defendant George E. Taylor lived on a farm 4½ miles southeast of Browning. The road leading from that place to Milan goes east until the outskirts of the former town are reached, when it turns north towards Milan. At the point where the road thus turns towards Milan, another road, also a continuation of the road from Browning, continues in a southeasterly course until it reaches the farm of George E. Taylor. At Milan lived Mrs. Martha J. Meeks, the mother of the murdered man. She had lived there since October, 1893, with her daughter-in-law, the wife of Gus Meeks, and their three small children. The scene of the murder was on Jenkins Hill, a point in Linn county, and on the road leading to defendant George E. Taylor's farm, and about 1½ miles from the latter, and about 2 miles southeast of Browning. This statement is sufficiently explanatory of the situation and surroundings to allow the evidence adduced at the final trial to be readily understood. A mistrial had occurred at the March term, 1895, of the Carroll circuit court, and the final trial of the cause occurred at the July term of that year.

Proceeding now to give the substantial portions of what the record discloses, it appears that the defendants were intimate associates of Gus Meeks; that Bill Taylor and Gus Meeks had prior to May 10, 1894, been jointly indicted by the grand jury of Sullivan county for stealing cattle. To this charge Meeks pleaded guilty, and was sentenced to the penitentiary, but at the same term Bill Taylor's case was continued. Meanwhile Bill Taylor had been charged in his home county with the crime of arson, and was indicted for that crime by the grand jury of Linn county; and, before his departure for Jefferson City, Meeks was taken to Linneus, and testified against Bill Taylor in the arson case. Taken afterwards to the penitentiary, Meeks was pardoned out by the governor in April, 1894, in order that he might return...

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196 cases
  • State v. O'Kelley
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Missouri
    • March 24, 1914
    ......By force of that curative statute it has been held even in a capital case (State v. Taylor, 134 Mo. 151, 35 S. W. 92), that an error in an instruction is not reversible unless prejudicial. In State v. Lovell, 235 Mo. 343, 138 S. W. 523, it was held that error in the exclusion of evidence, when not prejudicial, is not reversible. Sections 5162 and 5163, Revised Statutes, provide for ......
  • State v. Finkelstein
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Missouri
    • January 29, 1917
    ......State v. Gifford, 186 S. W. 1058; State v. Taylor, 183 S. W. loc. cit. 301; State v. Levy, 262 Mo. loc. cit. 190, 170 S. W. 1114; State v. Sykes, 248 Mo. loc. cit. 712, 154 S. W. 1130; State v. Dockery, 243 Mo. loc. cit. 592, 147 S. W. 976; State v. Chissell, 245 Mo. loc. cit. 554, 150 S. W. 1066; State v. Horton, 247 Mo. loc. cit. 663, 153 S. W. ......
  • Meldrum v. State
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Wyoming
    • March 8, 1915
    ......Scroggins, 37 Cal. 676; Babcock. v. People, 13 Colo. 516; 22 P. 817; State v. Spendlove, 44 Kan. 1; 24 P. 67; State v. Jackman, 29 Nev. 403; 91 P. 143; State v. Tarter, 26 Ore., 136; 37 P. 53; State v. Cushing, 14 Wash. 527; 45 P. 145; 53 Am. St. R., 883;. People v. Taylor, 69 N. E., 534; 177 N.Y. 237;. Enlow v. State, 154 Ind. 664; 57 N.E. 539; State. v. Peterson, 24 Mont. 81; 60 P. 809.) Evidence offered. of defendant's reputation, as a prudent, discreet and. cautious peace officer was competent and it was error to. exclude it. (1 Wigmore on Evi., Sec. ......
  • State v. Park
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Missouri
    • March 2, 1929
    ......State v. Degonia, 69 Mo. 490; State v. Taylor, 134 Mo. 109; (14) The only requirements necessary to make this verdict good is that it shall find all the essential elements of the offense so that the court can render judgment thereon. State v. Bishop, 231 Mo. 415. The name of the injured party is not an essential element of the offense and need ......
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