Friday, November 15, 2013

Nichols v. State case brief

Nichols v. State case brief summary
32 N.W. 543 (1887)

Defendant sought review of a judgment of the Circuit Court for Jackson County (Wisconsin), which convicted him of breaking and entering with intent to steal. The trial court denied defendant's motion requesting the trial court to arrest the judgment for the reason that the information did not charge defendant with any criminal offense known to the law in the State of Wisconsin.

Defendant arranged with a local express agent to have a box, with himself inside, placed on a train. A police officer and others found defendant inside the box with weapons, rope, gimlet, and a bottle of chloroform. There was also evidence tending to show that there were packages of money in the custody of the express agent on the car. The box was placed in the express car with the knowledge, and even by the assistance, of those in charge of the car. However, the car was not a passenger car, and defendant was not a passenger. The express company was exclusively a common carrier of freight. Defendant knew that he had no right to enter the express car at all without the consent of those in charge.


  • On appeal, the court affirmed. 
  • The court concluded from the proof that the entry was in the day time, which made it necessary to have charged a breaking in order to bring the case within Wis. Rev. Stat. § 4410. 
  • The evidence was sufficient to support the charge of breaking.

The court affirmed the conviction.

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