Matheson v. United States,
227 U.S. 540 (1913)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Matheson v. United States, 227 U.S. 540 (1913)

Matheson v. United States

No. 148

Submitted January 24, 1913

Decided February 24, 1913

227 U.S. 540


Where the jurisdiction is coextensive with the district, multiplication of places at which courts may be held or mere creation of divisions does not nullify it. Barrett v. United States, 169 U. S. 231.

Jurors summoned by the district judge in Alaska before the Act of March 3, 1909, creating a Fourth Division, became effective, to attend the first term of the court in that division when the act did become effective, held properly summoned, as the act did not create a new tribunal or revoke the power of the district judges to summon jurors to attend at any session of the court.

It is the duty of the judge to determine whether nonexperts are qualified to express an opinion as to sanity of the accused, and in this case there does not appear to have been any abuse of discretion.

An instruction that, while the burden of proof is on defendant to establish the fact of insanity, the jury cannot convict if they had reasonable doubt as to his sanity, held proper and sufficient. Davis v. United States, 160 U. S. 469.

The court properly instructed the jury as to the definition of insanity and as to what relieves defendant from criminal responsibility by giving the charge approved in Davis v. United States, 165 U. S. 373.

The facts, which involve the construction of certain provision of the Alaska Code of 1900 and the validity of a trial and conviction for murder in Alaska, are stated in the opinion.

Page 227 U. S. 541

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