Holiday v. Johnston
313 U.S. 342 (1941)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Holiday v. Johnston, 313 U.S. 342 (1941)

Holiday v. Johnston

No. 14, original

Argued May 5, 6, 1941

Decided May 26, 1941

313 U.S. 342

Syllabus

1. The erroneous imposition of two sentences for a single offense of which the accused has been convicted, or as to which he has pleaded guilty, does not constitute double jeopardy. P. 313 U. S. 349.

2. A prisoner, while serving a valid sentence cannot, by habeas corpus, attack a second sentence for the same offense timed to begin at the end of the first, although the second must be vacated before he can apply for parole under the first. P. 313 U. S. 349.

His remedy is to apply for vacation of the sentence and for a resentence in conformity with the statute under which he was adjudged guilty.

3. Petitions for habeas corpus are not to be regarded meticulously; and, even if insufficient in substance, may be amended in the interest of justice. P. 313 U. S. 350.

In the present instance, the district judge, by regarding the petition, traverse, and return as making issues of fact justifying the taking of evidence, did not abuse his discretion.

4. Under the habeas corpus statute, the district judge must himself hear the prisoner's testimony and, in the light of it and other testimony, must find the facts and base his disposition of the case upon his findings. P. 313 U. S. 351.

A practice of commanding that the prisoner be taken before a Commissioner to take evidence and report and of disposing of the case upon the record made before the Commissioner, cannot be sustained because of its convenience or because it is a practice of long standing which has found its place in a rule of court.

5. Rule 53 of the Rules of Civil Procedure dealing with references to Masters, has no application to habeas corpus cases. P. 313 U. S. 353.

Reversed.

Certiorari, 312 U.S. 673, to review an order refusing a petition for leave to appeal in forma pauperis from a judgment of the District Court discharging a writ of habeas corpus.

Page 313 U. S. 347

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