QUEENAN V. OKLAHOMA, 190 U. S. 548 (1903)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Queenan v. Oklahoma, 190 U.S. 548 (1903)

Queenan v. Oklahoma

No. 216

Argued April 16-17, 1903

Decided June 1, 1903

190 U.S. 548


1. A witness for the defense in a murder trial, who is not an expert, but who knew the prisoner before the killing, may state the opinion he formed at the time as to the mental condition of the prisoner, and sum up his impressions received at the time he saw the prisoner before the killing, but, except under special circumstances, he may not state an opinion formed since the killing.

2. It is not error to instruct the jury that, under § 1852 of the Oklahoma Statutes of 1893, they should acquit if they found the accused was not able to know that the act of taking his victim's life was wrongful, and was not able to comprehend and understand the consequences of such act, if the jury also was instructed that, in order to find him guilty, they must find that he knew and understood that it was wrong to take the life and was able to comprehend and understand the consequences of such act.

3. When, during the course of a murder trial in Oklahoma, it transpires that a juror, contrary to his statements on the voir dire, is disqualified and the prisoner has an opportunity to have him excused and the trial begun anew and his counsel refrain from making any objection at that time, it is too late for him to complain after the verdict of guilty has been rendered.

The case is stated in the opinion of the court.