United States v. Davenport, No. 13413.

CourtUnited States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (7th Circuit)
Writing for the CourtHASTINGS, , and SCHNACKENBERG and KILEY, Circuit
Citation312 F.2d 303
PartiesUNITED STATES of America, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. Isaac DAVENPORT, Defendant-Appellant.
Docket NumberNo. 13413.
Decision Date11 February 1963

312 F.2d 303 (1963)

UNITED STATES of America, Plaintiff-Appellee,
Isaac DAVENPORT, Defendant-Appellant.

No. 13413.

United States Court of Appeals Seventh Circuit.

January 10, 1963.

Rehearing Denied February 11, 1963.

312 F.2d 304

George N. Leighton, Chicago, Ill., for appellant.

James P. O'Brien, U. S. Atty., John Peter Lulinski, Asst. U. S. Atty., Chicago, Ill., for appellee.

Before HASTINGS, Chief Judge, and SCHNACKENBERG and KILEY, Circuit Judges


Isaac Davenport, defendant, has appealed from his conviction in the district court for violations of 26 U.S.C.A. § 4705(a), Internal Revenue Code of 1954, as amended by the Narcotic Control Act of 1956, as charged in counts one, three and five, and violations of 21 U.S.C.A. § 174, as amended by said act of 1956, as charged in counts two, four and six, of an indictment by the June 1960 grand jury.

312 F.2d 305

Following his plea of not guilty he was tried by the court without a jury commencing on February 27, 1961.

According to defendant's brief, the government's case consisted of the testimony of agents Jackson and Dayle, the introduction as exhibits of narcotics purchased on the dates charged in the indictment and a stipulation that two other federal agents (Hnatt and Connelly), if called to testify, would testify in corroboration of the two agents who did testify, and a stipulation that chemist Shafer, if called as a witness, would testify that the substance referred to by the agents in their testimony was, in his opinion, heroin hydrochloride, a narcotic drug.

On said February 27, when the government rested its case, defense counsel asked the court for an order on the government to produce Sam Neal, a special employee, referred to by defense counsel herein as an informer. Government counsel said its agents had no knowledge of Neal's whereabouts at the time of the request, to which defense counsel responded that he was surprised by the government's failure to have Neal in court, but conceded that no demand prior to trial had been made upon the government to produce him.

The motion of defendant was denied and defendant requested a continuance until March 6, 1961 to allow him to bring in Neal. Although the court denied this request, he continued the matter to February 28 at 2 P.M., at which time the cause resumed. Defense counsel stated that efforts had been made to find Neal and a subpoena had been issued and lodged with the marshal for service, but was returned "not found". The court permitted defense counsel to examine Vera Bennett, sworn as a witness, and she testified that that morning she met Neal on a street in Chicago, prior to 4 A.M., that she walked with him and "gave him the piece of paper that you signed for Davenport to give him * *." She was asked: "And was that a subpoena?" She answered in the affirmative but said that she had no occasion to read it. She said that she got it from Davenport, and that Neal said he "would make it his business to be here at exactly two o'clock."

She further testified that she did not have a copy of the subpoena that she served upon Neal and had no copy on which return was made; that she gave him $2 for the purpose of appearing — $1 to eat and $1 for carfare.

The court remarked that "we have no return here of any subpoena having been served" and thereupon denied a motion for a bench warrant for Neal.1 The defense then rested.

1. Defendant contends that the court committed prejudicial error in that it deprived him of process by which Neal could have been compelled to attend court as a witness, thus depriving defendant of rights guaranteed by the sixth amendment to the constitution of the United States.2

Undoubtedly defendant is correct in his insistence that he was entitled to the right to have compulsory attendance of witnesses and that who they were to be was a matter for him and his counsel to decide. But the question which we must decide is whether he used the proper method for producing the witness in court. That the witness was an informer is irrelevant. Therefore defendant's reliance on Roviaro v. United States, 353 U.S. 53, 77 S.Ct. 623, 1 L.Ed. 2d 639, does not affect a determination of

312 F.2d 306
the question of whether he made a showing entitling him to compulsory process for the production of Neal in court as a witness

Certainly the court has power to punish for contempt of its authority any disobedience of its lawful writ or process. 18 U.S.C.A. § 401. So far as subpoenas for the attendance of witnesses are concerned, the courts have the power to make rules, 28 U.S.C.A. § 2071. Accordingly such rules have been promulgated, as we now set forth.

Rule 17 of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure deals with subpoenas for witnesses.

Paragraph (a) states...

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