United States v. Behrman, No. 582

CourtUnited States Supreme Court
Writing for the CourtDAY
Citation42 S.Ct. 303,258 U.S. 280,66 L.Ed. 619
Decision Date27 March 1922
Docket NumberNo. 582
PartiesUNITED STATES v. BEHRMAN

258 U.S. 280
42 S.Ct. 303
66 L.Ed. 619
UNITED STATES

v.

BEHRMAN.

No. 582.
Argued March 7, 1922.
Decided March 27, 1922.

Page 281

Mr. Wm. C. Herron, of Washington, D. C., for the United states.

[Argument of Counsel from page 281-282 intentionally omitted]

Page 282

Mr. Thomas C. Spelling, of New York City, for defendant in error.

[Argument of Counsel from pages 282-285 intentionally omitted]

Page 285

Mr. Justice DAY delivered the opinion of the Court.

This case is here under the Criminal Appeals Act. 34 Stat. 1246 (Comp. St. § 1704). The statute involved is the Narcotic Drug Act of December 17, 1914, c. 1, § 2, subd. 'a,' 38 Stat. 785, 786 (Comp. St. § 6287h).

This statute, in section 2, subdivision 'a,' makes it an offense to sell, barter, exchange, or give away any of the narcotic drugs named in the act except in pursuance of a written order of the person to whom such article is sold, bartered, exchanged, or given, on a form to be issued in blank for that purpose by the Commissioner of Internal Revenue. It is further provided that nothing in the section shall apply to the dispensing or distribution of any of the drugs to a patient of a registered physician in the course of his professional practice only, or to the sale, dispensing or distribution of said drugs by a dealer to a consumer in pursuance of a written prescription issued by a physician registered under the act.

Page 286

The indictment charges that the defendant did unlawfully sell, barter, and give to Willie King a compound, manufacture, and derivative of opium, to wit, 150 grains of heroin and 360 grains of morphine, and a compound, manufacture, and derivative of coca leaves, to wit, 210 grains of cocaine, not in pursuance of any written order of King on a form issued for that purpose by the Commissioner of Internal Revenue of the United States; that the defendant was a duly licensed physician and registered under the act, and issued three written orders to the said King in the form of prescriptions signed by him, which prescriptions called for the delivery to King of the amount of drugs above described; that the defendant intended that King should obtain the drugs from the druggist upon the said orders; that King did obtain upon said orders drugs of the amount and kind above described pursuant to the said prescriptions; that King was a person addicted to the habitual use of morphine, heroin, and cocaine, and known by the defendant to be so addicted; that King did not require the administration of either morphine, heroin, or cocaine by reason of any disease other than such addiction; that defendant did not dispense any of the drugs for the purpose of treating any disease or condition other than such addiction; that none of the drugs so dispensed by the defendant was administered to or intended by the defendant to be administered to King by the defendant or any nurse, or person acting under the direction of the defendant, nor were any of the drugs consumed or intended to be consumed by King in the presence of the defendant, but that all of the drugs were put in the possession or control of King, with the intention on the part of the defendant that King would use the same by self-administration in divided doses over a period of several days, the amount of each of said drugs dispensed being more than sufficient or necessary to satisfy the craving of King therefor, if consumed by him all at one

Page 287

time; that King was not in any way restrained or prevented from disposing of the drugs in any manner he saw fit; and that the drugs so dispensed by the defendant were in the form in which said drugs are usually consumed by persons addicted to the habitual use thereof to satisfy their craving therefor, and were adapted for such consumption.

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201 practice notes
  • Rehaif v. United States, No. 17-9560
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • June 21, 2019
    ...64 S.Ct. 134, 88 L.Ed. 48 (1943) ; United States v. Balint , 258 U.S. 250, 42 S.Ct. 301, 66 L.Ed. 604 (1922) ; United States v. Behrman , 258 U.S. 280, 42 S.Ct. 303, 66 L.Ed. 619 (1922). In any event, if the avoidance of a serious constitutional question required us to infer that some mens ......
  • U.S. v. Harris, Nos. 89-3205
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (District of Columbia)
    • April 3, 1992
    ...Balint, 258 U.S. 250, 42 S.Ct. 301, 66 L.Ed. 604 (1922). Freed, 401 U.S. at 609, 91 S.Ct. at 1119-20 (quoting Balint, 258 U.S. at 254, 42 S.Ct. at 303). But this proposition necessarily assumes that the defendant knew he possessed a grenade. See id. at 612, 91 S.Ct. at 1120 (Brennan, J., co......
  • United States v. Heck, No. 73-1671 to 73-1675 and 73-1697.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (9th Circuit)
    • June 5, 1974
    ...e., no double jeopardy could exist. See United States v. Chunn, 347 F.2d 717, 720 (4th Cir. 1965) which quotes United States v. Behrman, 258 U.S. 280, 42 S.Ct. 303, 66 L.Ed. 619 (1922) (and later Supreme Court cases in note 7), and further states that the allegation which describes the pers......
  • U.S. v. Moore, No. 73-1192
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (District of Columbia)
    • February 18, 1975
    ...Act referred to in the opinion are reproduced in Appendix II, infra. 16 The government cites cases such as United States v. Behrman, 258 U.S. 280, 42 S.Ct. 303, 66 L.Ed. 619 (1921); United States v. Doremus, 249 U.S. 86, 39 S.Ct. 214, 63 L.Ed. 493 (1919); Linder v. United States, 268 U.S. 5......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
200 cases
  • Rehaif v. United States, No. 17-9560
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • June 21, 2019
    ...64 S.Ct. 134, 88 L.Ed. 48 (1943) ; United States v. Balint , 258 U.S. 250, 42 S.Ct. 301, 66 L.Ed. 604 (1922) ; United States v. Behrman , 258 U.S. 280, 42 S.Ct. 303, 66 L.Ed. 619 (1922). In any event, if the avoidance of a serious constitutional question required us to infer that some mens ......
  • U.S. v. Harris, Nos. 89-3205
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (District of Columbia)
    • April 3, 1992
    ...Balint, 258 U.S. 250, 42 S.Ct. 301, 66 L.Ed. 604 (1922). Freed, 401 U.S. at 609, 91 S.Ct. at 1119-20 (quoting Balint, 258 U.S. at 254, 42 S.Ct. at 303). But this proposition necessarily assumes that the defendant knew he possessed a grenade. See id. at 612, 91 S.Ct. at 1120 (Brennan, J., co......
  • United States v. Heck, No. 73-1671 to 73-1675 and 73-1697.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (9th Circuit)
    • June 5, 1974
    ...e., no double jeopardy could exist. See United States v. Chunn, 347 F.2d 717, 720 (4th Cir. 1965) which quotes United States v. Behrman, 258 U.S. 280, 42 S.Ct. 303, 66 L.Ed. 619 (1922) (and later Supreme Court cases in note 7), and further states that the allegation which describes the pers......
  • U.S. v. Moore, No. 73-1192
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (District of Columbia)
    • February 18, 1975
    ...Act referred to in the opinion are reproduced in Appendix II, infra. 16 The government cites cases such as United States v. Behrman, 258 U.S. 280, 42 S.Ct. 303, 66 L.Ed. 619 (1921); United States v. Doremus, 249 U.S. 86, 39 S.Ct. 214, 63 L.Ed. 493 (1919); Linder v. United States, 268 U.S. 5......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
1 books & journal articles
  • Reflections of an Academic Clinical Researcher on the past 40 Years of Addiction Development
    • United States
    • Journal of Drug Issues Nbr. 39-1, January 2009
    • January 1, 2009
    ...Manak In Drug Dependence and Abuse Resource Book. 482-84, Chicago: National District Attorney’s Association. United States v. Behrman 1922 258 U.S. 280. Retrieved April 15, 2009, http://www.druglibrary.org/ schaffer/legal/l1920/united_states_v_behrman.htm.Webb et al. v. United States1919 24......

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