Saturday, November 2, 2013

Hector v. State case brief

Hector v. State case brief summary
2 Mo. 166 (1829)

Defendant sought review of the judgment of the trial court (Missouri), which convicted him of burglary.

When the burglary was discovered, certain persons caught defendant and flogged him in an attempt to make him confess to the burglary. The persons continued to flog defendant for several hours until defendant stated that he knew the location of the stolen money. The money was not found in the location specified by defendant. Defendant's counsel filed a motion to exclude the confession on the ground that it was not voluntary and coerced through pain, however, the trial court overruled the motion.


  • On appeal, the court held that the trial court erred in not excluding the confession. 
  • The court determined that defendant's confession was made to gain a respite from the pain of the flogging. 
  • The court stated that the trial court erred in instructing the jury that all confessions made freely and voluntarily by defendant were evidence because the issue of whether a confession was made freely and voluntarily was a matter to be decided by the court, not the jury. 
  • The court concluded that the trial court did not err in refusing to discharge the jury on account of one of the juror's inability to continue.


The court reversed the judgment of the trial court and remanded the cause for a new trial.

Recommended Supplements for Criminal Procedure Criminal Procedure: Examples & Explanations, Sixth Edition
Emanuel Law Outline: Criminal Procedure

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