Whip v. State, 26021

CourtMississippi Supreme Court
Writing for the CourtANDERSON, J.
Citation143 Miss. 757,109 So. 697
PartiesWHIP v. STATE. [*]
Docket Number26021
Decision Date11 October 1926

109 So. 697

143 Miss. 757

WHIP
v.
STATE. [*]

No. 26021

Supreme Court of Mississippi

October 11, 1926


APPEAL from circuit court of Humphreys county, HON. S. F. DAVIS, Judge.

(In Banc.)

1. CRIMINAL LAW.

Evidence must exclude every reasonable doubt that confession was procured under threat of punishment or promise of reward, and that it was not freely and voluntarily made.

[143 Miss. 758]

2. CRIMINAL LAW.

Influence of threats or hope of reward under which confession was made must be shown to have been removed before the making of subsequent confession that latter may be admissible.

3. CRIMINAL LAW.

It is duty of no one to extort confession from prisoner, rather he should be warned that any statement may be user against him.

4. CRIMINAL LAW.

Confession by one charged with crime, though to person not an officer, if procured by improper influence, is inadmissible.

5. CRIMINAL LAW.

Voluntary confession proceeds from spontaneous operation of party's mind, free from influence of any extraneous cause.

6. CRIMINAL LAW.

Under uncontradicted testimony of defendant, held his confession was incompetent as not proceeding from spontaneous operation of his own mind, free from outside influence.

7. CRIMINAL LAW.

In procuring confession from defendant by improper influence, he is forced to give evidence against himself in contravention of Constitution 1890, section 26.

HON. S. F. DAVIS, Judge.

James Whip was convicted of murder, and he appeals. Reversed and remanded.

Reversed and remanded.

H. F. Jones and Louis Cochran, for appellant.

Attention of the court is directed to the alleged confessions shown by the sheriff of Humphreys county and by the prosecuting attorney. We have here a negro boy, entirely drunk, his life having been threatened, apprehended [143 Miss. 759] by strangers, stripped of his clothing and beaten by a negro who was ordered and directed to administer the beating to him by white men, thrown into a solitary cell, stripped of his clothing for a period of nine days, told by some of the men that they were going to hang him, told by one of the prisoners, a white man, and also by a deputy sheriff that he would be hanged unless he confessed and that it would go better with him to plead guilty and ask the mercy of the court; and he states that these were the reasons which impelled him to tell the sheriff and prosecuting attorney that he committed the act. Has this been denied by the sheriff, by the prisoner Cummins, by Webb, the deputy sheriff? No. The first words of the sheriff to the defendant when the defendant sent for him and asked to be permitted to go with the other prisoners in the jail were: "Haven't you anything to tell me?" He expected the confession he had already planted.

The prisoner, defendant, was told repeatedly by a white man in the jail whom he did not know, that they were going to hang him, but if he plead guilty they would not hang him. There was no evidence contradicting this statement of the defendant. Cummins does not appear on the stand and dispute it; nor does the deputy sheriff, Webb, deny that he also told this defendant that it would be best for him to plead guilty and ask the mercy of the court. More than this, it is shown by the language of the sheriff himself, just before the alleged confession was made that there was an understanding between the sheriff, Cummins and Webb to induce the defendant to make a confession.

Is it worthwhile to say more concerning the testimony relative to confessions thus procured? It makes no difference who procured the confession, who offered the inducements or suggested them, or who made the threats or administered the "initiation." Of course, the sheriff answered the perfunctory and leading question that the confessions were without inducement or immunity [143 Miss. 760] and without threat made by himself. That threats were made, that punishment was administered, that inducement was offered or suggested, and that influenced by all of this, a confession was wrung from the defendant is quite sufficient to make such a confession involuntary and, therefore, inadmissible; and the court erred in not excluding them from the consideration of the jury.

J. A. Lauderdale, Assistant Attorney-General, for the state.

The confessions made by appellant were properly admitted as testimony before the jury. At the time a hearing was had before the court, in the absence of the jury, defendant did not offer any testimony in contradiction of the statements made by Mr. Purvis, nor did he object to this testimony going to the jury. The testimony with reference to the admissibility of the dying declaration of deceased and the confessions of appellant were held at the same time. When this examination of Mr. Purvis was concluded, the defendant did not offer testimony to contradict him, neither did he object to the testimony with reference to the confession. When the state offered to prove the alleged confessions of appellant before the jury, no objections were made by him.

I understand it to be the rule that when testimony of confessions is admitted and it afterwards develops that the confessions were illegally obtained, that it is the duty of the court to exclude the same from the consideration of the jury. It is...

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31 practice notes
  • Brown v. State, 31375
    • United States
    • Mississippi Supreme Court
    • April 29, 1935
    ...State, 65 So. 218, 107 Miss. 196; Ellis v. State, 65 Miss. 44; Williams v. State, 72 Miss. 117; Lee v. State, 102 So. 296; Whip v. State, 109 So. 697; Fisher v. State, 110 So. 361; Banks v. State, 47 So. 437, 93 Miss. 700; Mackmasters v. State, 82 Miss. 459; Whitley v. State, 78 Miss. 255. ......
  • Owen v. State, 32379
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
    • December 14, 1936
    ...be excluded from the jury. Ellis v. State, 65 Miss. 44; Williams v. State, 72 Miss. 117; State v. Smith, 72 Miss. 420; Whip v. State, 143 Miss. 757; Ammons v. State, 80 Miss. 592; Johnson v. State, 107 Miss. 196; Jones v. State, 133 Miss. 684; Banks v. State, 93 Miss. 700; 1 Greenl. Evidenc......
  • Pullen v. State, 32065
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
    • May 11, 1936
    ...of the consequences. The evidence must exclude every reasonable doubt that the confession was freely and voluntarily made. Whip v. State, 143 Miss. 757, 109 So. 697; Ellis v. State, 65 Miss. 44, 3 So. 188; Williams v. State, 72 Miss. 117, 16 So. 296; State v. Smith, 72 Miss. 420, 18 So. 482......
  • Keeton v. State, 31931
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
    • April 6, 1936
    ...v. State, 170 Miss. 196, 65 So. 218; Underhill on Criminal Evidence (2 Ed.), sec. 126; People v. McMahou, 15 N.Y. 384; Whip v. State, 143 Miss. 757, 109 So. 697; Whitley v. State, 78 Miss. 255, 28 So. 852, 53 L. R. A. 402; Durham v. State, 47 So. 545; Reason v. State, 94 Miss. 290, 48 So. 8......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
31 cases
  • Brown v. State, 31375
    • United States
    • Mississippi Supreme Court
    • April 29, 1935
    ...State, 65 So. 218, 107 Miss. 196; Ellis v. State, 65 Miss. 44; Williams v. State, 72 Miss. 117; Lee v. State, 102 So. 296; Whip v. State, 109 So. 697; Fisher v. State, 110 So. 361; Banks v. State, 47 So. 437, 93 Miss. 700; Mackmasters v. State, 82 Miss. 459; Whitley v. State, 78 Miss. 255. ......
  • Owen v. State, 32379
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
    • December 14, 1936
    ...be excluded from the jury. Ellis v. State, 65 Miss. 44; Williams v. State, 72 Miss. 117; State v. Smith, 72 Miss. 420; Whip v. State, 143 Miss. 757; Ammons v. State, 80 Miss. 592; Johnson v. State, 107 Miss. 196; Jones v. State, 133 Miss. 684; Banks v. State, 93 Miss. 700; 1 Greenl. Evidenc......
  • Pullen v. State, 32065
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
    • May 11, 1936
    ...of the consequences. The evidence must exclude every reasonable doubt that the confession was freely and voluntarily made. Whip v. State, 143 Miss. 757, 109 So. 697; Ellis v. State, 65 Miss. 44, 3 So. 188; Williams v. State, 72 Miss. 117, 16 So. 296; State v. Smith, 72 Miss. 420, 18 So. 482......
  • Keeton v. State, 31931
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Mississippi
    • April 6, 1936
    ...v. State, 170 Miss. 196, 65 So. 218; Underhill on Criminal Evidence (2 Ed.), sec. 126; People v. McMahou, 15 N.Y. 384; Whip v. State, 143 Miss. 757, 109 So. 697; Whitley v. State, 78 Miss. 255, 28 So. 852, 53 L. R. A. 402; Durham v. State, 47 So. 545; Reason v. State, 94 Miss. 290, 48 So. 8......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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