Williams v. Clark, 41085

Decision Date06 April 1959
Docket NumberNo. 41085,41085
Citation110 So.2d 365,236 Miss. 423
PartiesW. L. WILLIAMS v. Walter CLARK.
CourtMississippi Supreme Court

Kellner & Kellner, Fountain Dawson, Greenville, for appellant.

Philip Mansour, Greenville, for appellee.


Appellant, plaintiff below, sued appellee, defendant below, for actual and punitive damages for an alleged assault and battery committed upon the appellant by the appellee. The jury returned a verdict for the defendant and plaintiff appeals.

Since the conflicts in the evidence were resolved in favor of appellee, we shall disregard the testimony offered by appellant where there is any conflict.

Appellee operated a poolroom in Greenville, Mississippi. He kept a metal money box in a cabinet behind the counter. Appellee left the place of business for a short time, and while he was gone one Langdon was in charge. When appellee returned, he checked the money box and found $368.40 missing. Langdon told appellee that he had gone out the rear door to get some beer from the beer house and was out of the poolroom some three or four minutes. Four people told appellee that appellant was behind the counter and at least one of them told him that Williams got something out of the metal cash box. After this occurrence, appellee contacted the police and sought their assistance in finding appellant. Appellee and the police unable to find appellant immediately. Sometime later appellee went to a liquor store located some three miles from town where he found appellant. When he saw appellant, appellee said to him: 'Williams, you son of a bitch, come here and give me my money.' Appellee also testified that, 'I shoved him back and told him to empty his pockets on the back of a chair and I said there wasn't more than $60 or $70 there and I patted his pockets to see if he had any more.' When appellee did not get all of his money that he thought appellant had, he said to appellant, 'Well, Williams, you are goint to make me take you to the police station and if I can I am going to send you to the pen.'

Appellee then took appellant to the police station where appellant was put in jail, later transferred to the county jail. His case was presented to the grand jury which returned a 'no-bill', and the police gave back to appellant the money appellee had taken from him. Appellee stated that his only motive was to find Williams and try to get his money back. No warrant for the arrest of appellant was obtained.

Appellant contends that he was entitled to a peremptory instruction on liability. Appellee contends that he had probable cause to believe that appellant had stolen his money and thereby had committed a felony, and that under Section 2470, Mississippi Code of 1942, appellee had the right as a private citizen to arrest appellant.

We are of the opinion that appellee had reasonable ground to suspect and believe appellant had committed a felony, and that appellee had a right under the statute to make the arrest. The statute giving that right is Section 2470, Mississippi Code of 1942, as follows:

'An officer or private person may arrest any person without warrant, for an indictable offense committed, or a breach of the peace threatened or attempted in his presence; or when a person has committed a felony, though not in his presence; or when a felony has been committed, and he has reasonable ground to suspect and believe the person proposed to be arrested to have committed it; or on a charge, made upon reasonable cause, of the commission of a felony by the party proposed to be arrested. And in all cases of arrests without warrant, the person making such arrest must inform the accused of the object and cause of the arrest, except when he is in the actual commission of the offense, or is arrested on pursuit.'

We are also of the opinion that the evidence conclusively shows that appellee acted in anger and in an insulting manner at the time of the alleged arrest, and that unless appellee is in some manner protected by the statute just quoted he was guilty of an assault and battery upon appell...

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7 cases
  • City of Mound Bayou v. Johnson
    • United States
    • Mississippi Supreme Court
    • April 18, 1990
    ...III. Count I of Johnson's complaint states a claim generically akin to a common law assault and battery. See Williams v. Clark, 236 Miss. 423, 427, 110 So.2d 365, 367 (1959); Morgan v. Loyacomo, 190 Miss. 656, 663, 1 So.2d 510, 511 (1941); see also State For the Use of Smith v. Smith, 156 M......
  • Burnham v. Tabb
    • United States
    • Mississippi Supreme Court
    • May 20, 1987
    ...from all evidence offered in favor of Dr. Tabb. Phillips v. Dow Chemical Co., 247 Miss. 293, 151 So.2d 199 (1963); Williams v. Clark, 236 Miss. 423, 110 So.2d 365 (1959). The jury's determination is rationally based upon evidence adduced at trial and should not be disturbed. This Court has ......
  • Index Drilling Co. v. Williams
    • United States
    • Mississippi Supreme Court
    • February 5, 1962
    ...to apportion damages under the comparative negligence statute. Vaughan v. Bollis, 221 Miss. 589, 73 So.2d 160 (1954); Williams v. Clark, 236 Miss. 423, 110 So.2d 365 (1959); Jenkins v. Cogan, 238 Miss. 543, 119 So.2d 363 (1960); Carlisle v. Cobb Bros. Construction Co., Inc., 238 Miss. 681, ......
  • Jenkins v. Cogan
    • United States
    • Mississippi Supreme Court
    • April 4, 1960
    ...the right to apportion damages under the comparative negligence statute. Vaughan v. Bollis, 221 Miss. 589, 73 So.2d 160; Williams v. Clark, Miss., 110 So.2d 365. Affirmed on direct appeal, and reversed on cross-appeal and remanded for trial on the issue of damages All Justices concur, excep......
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