United States v. Shipp,
203 U.S. 563 (1906)

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U.S. Supreme Court

United States v. Shipp, 203 U.S. 563 (1906)

United States v. Shipp

No. 12, Original

Argued December 4, 5, 1906

Decided December 24, 1906

203 U.S. 563


Even if the circuit court of the United States has no jurisdiction to entertain the petition for habeas corpus of one convicted in the state court, and this Court has no jurisdiction of an appeal from the order of the circuit court denying the petition, this Court, and this Court alone, has jurisdiction to decide whether the case is properly before it, and, until its judgment declining jurisdiction is announced, it has authority to make orders to preserve existing conditions, and a willful disregard of those orders constitutes contempt.

Where the contempt consists of personal presence and overt acts, those charged therewith cannot be purged by their mere disavowal of intent under oath.

In contempt proceedings, the court is not a party; there is nothing that affects the judges in their own persons, and their only concern is that the law should be obeyed and enforced.

After an appeal has been allowed by one of the Justices of this Court, and an order entered that all proceedings against appellant be stayed and his custody retained pending appeal, the acts of persons having knowledge of such order in creating a mob and taking appellant from his place of confinement and hanging him constitute contempt of this Court, and it is immaterial whether appellant's custodian be regarded as a mere state officer or as bailee of the United States under the order.

The facts are stated in the opinion.

Page 203 U. S. 571

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