St. Louis, Iron Mountain etc. Ry. Co. v. Wynn - 224 U.S. 354 (1912)
U.S. Supreme Court
St. Louis, Iron Mountain etc. Ry. Co. v. Wynn, 224 U.S. 354 (1912)
St. Louis, Iron Mountain & Southern Railway Company v. Wynn
Submitted December 14, 1911
Decided April 15, 1912
224 U.S. 354
A state statute which attaches onerous penalties to the nonpayment of extravagant demands denies the due process of law guaranteed by the Fourteenth Amendment.
The statute of Arkansas of 1907, Act 61, providing that railroad companies must pay claims for live stock killed or injured by their trains within thirty day after notice and that failure to do so shall entitle the owner to double damages and an attorney's fee, even if the amount sued for is less than the amount originally demanded, as construed by the Supreme Court of that state, is unconstitutional as a denial of due process of law under the Fourteenth Amendment.
Quaere, and not decided, whether the statute is unconstitutional as denying due process of law even where the original demand is sustained.
90 Ark. 538 reversed.
The facts, which involve the constitutionality under the due process and equal protection clauses of the Constitution of a statute of the State of Arkansas imposing double liability in certain instances upon railway corporations, are stated in the opinion.