He went to the mall to think over his future. The coffee spilled over the floor around several nearby tables, splashing several other customers. The two coffee shop employees hurried around the counter to mop up the mess and blot coffee from angry customers.
The main question presented by this appeal involves the validity of the Georgia obscenity statute and whether it violates the First and Fourteenth Amendments in authorizing a conviction for mere possession of articles contended to be obscene in removing the element of scienter from the definition of the offense by punishing a possessor on less evidence than it takes to prove actual knowledge of its obscene nature.
Such statute thus places every citizen in jeopardy of punishment by the State for possessing matter of which he may not have actual knowledge, or for believing, as he has a right to under the freedom of press clause of the First Amendment, that in his opinion it is not obscene.
Such question is also so substantial as to require plenary consideration because it deprives a citizen of the right given by the First Amendment to judge for himself, if he so chooses, as to what photographs, writings or books he may possess in the privacy of his own home.
The case believed to sustain the jurisdiction of this court on this ground is Smith v. It was recognized in the Smith case that in other types of offenses, such as food and drug legislation, "the public interest in the purity of its food is so great as to warrant the imposition of the highest standard writing a jurisdictional statement definition care on distributors - in fact an absolute standard which will not hear the distributor's plea as to the amount of care he has used.
To put the matter in converse, are the States to be prohibited from convicting a seller who has no knowledge of the contents of the book he is selling, but may the same State convict such seller of possessing the same book, even though he was without the same knowledge?
The indictment in this case charges the appellant with knowingly possessing obscene matter.
It further charges that he should reasonably have known of the obscene nature of said matter. If he has been called upon to defend his actual knowledge that is one thing. If he has been called upon to defend that he should reasonably have known of the obscene nature of said matter that is another.
If the State is able, by some sort of proof, direct or circumstantial, to show that the appellant should reasonably have known of the obscene nature of said matter, such proof could be adduced far short of proving the he actually did know.
This removed the element of scienter, and thus took from the appellant the constitutional protection of the First and Fourteenth Amendments. It would be virtually impossible for any person to have either actual knowledge that any matter is obscene, or could reasonably be expected to have such knowledge, without having actually or constructively possessed such matter beforehand.
For an individual to have knowledge of the contents of a reel of film, or to reach a determination of his own that it is obscene, can be arrived at in only two ways. First, by viewing the film. Second, by having been told by another person that in his opinion it is obscene.
Thus, in order to learn firsthand it would be necessary that one possess the film in order to see it and thus discover for himself his own opinion of its contents. To obtain the opinion of another that such film is obscene is to be deprived of the constitutional right to access of such picture, and thus be deprived of freedom of speech and press.
Furthermore, the opinion of one man that a certain film is obscene may oftentimes not be shared by others. Consequently, in order for one to have knowledge of the contents of a film, or to make a determination for himself that it is obscene, necessarily requires its possession, and such possession has been made an offense under Georgia law.
Therefore, if A picks up a book at a newsstand or library, not knowing of its contents, he is in possession of it. If he reads it, in order to make a determination that it is actually constitutionally protected matter, and after reading it learns that it is obscene, he has violated the Georgia law because he has possessed it at the time he knows it to be obscene.
Such a law is obviously unconstitutional, and cannot stand. If he should only have reasonably known of the obscene nature of said matter, instead of actually having such firsthand knowledge, the unconstitutionality of such statute is further removed by one more degree. State of New York, Austin v.
Kentucky, and Gent v. State of Arkansas, U. All three cases involved selling and offering obscene literature. All three cases were reversed on First and Fourteenth Amendment grounds.
In percuriam decision, the Supreme Court held: United States, U. No sale is alleged. No exhibition or attempted exhibition is alleged. No advertisement is alleged. No corruption of minors is alleged. No transportation is alleged. In fact, nothing is alleged to have been done by the appellant other than the fact that he did "possess" such matter.
The statute offends the Federal Constitution, and must be so declared. The overruling of the general and special demurrer on these grounds was error, and such ruling should be reversed.concise statement of grounds of this court's jurisdiction This was a criminal proceeding brought by the State of Georgia charging the appellant with a felony, possessing obscene material in violation of Georgia Code as amended by an Act of the General Assembly of , p.
Rule doesn’t say what information to include in a jurisdictional statement. So I take a cue from Fed. R. App.
P. 28(a)(4) and include the following information in my jurisdictional statement: The statutory basis for the court’s jurisdiction and the relevant facts establishing jurisdiction. Jurisdictional Statement Law and Legal Definition Jurisdictional statement is the section of an appellate brief that asserts the basis of appealability and the suitability of .
In Louisiana appellate practice, the appellant’s brief and the relator’s writ application must include a jurisdictional statement. To get this simple part of a brief or writ application right, you need to know the governing rules and—equally important—the purpose of the jurisdictional statement.
At the jurisdictional hearing, the court shall first consider only the question whether the minor is a person described by Section Any legally admissible evidence that is relevant to the circumstances or acts that are alleged to bring the minor within the jurisdiction of the juvenile court is admissible and may be received in evidence.
Jurisdictional Statement Law and Legal Definition Jurisdictional statement is the section of an appellate brief that asserts the basis of appealability and the suitability of the court to hear the claim.