Cardinale v. Louisiana

LOCATION: Souther District Court of Georgia

DECIDED BY: Warren Court (1967-1969)

CITATION: 394 US 437 (1969)
ARGUED: Feb 24, 1969
DECIDED: Apr 01, 1969

Facts of the case


Media for Cardinale v. Louisiana

Audio Transcription for Oral Argument - February 24, 1969 in Cardinale v. Louisiana

Earl Warren:

Philip Cardinale, Jr., petitioner, versus Louisiana.

Is the other-- is there another counsel to be there?

I -- I see, you’re just sitting over one.

I thought you--

Preston H. Hufft:

Oh, no it’s--

Earl Warren:

That makes no difference.

It’s alright.

Sit where you wish.

I just wondered if you had an associate who was to sit in that chair, was all.

Preston H. Hufft:

No, sir.

Earl Warren:


Mr. Greenberg, you may proceed with your argument.

Nathan Greenberg:

Mr. Chief Justice and may it please the Court.

My name is Nathan Greenberg.

I’m an attorney from Gretna, Louisiana.

I represent the defendant in this case, Philip Cardinale, Jr. who was the petitioner in this Honorable Court for a petition for a writ of certiorari.

The petitioner was convicted of the crime of murder in Plaquemine Parish, Louisiana and he was sentenced to death.

For his appeal, we originally perfected some-14 Bills of exceptions which we took to the Supreme Court of Louisiana and we are here before Your Honors today on what would probably amount to two of the Bills of exceptions which have been combined together in one

The Crux of the issue before Your Honors today is the effect of testimony relative to prior offenses of the accused where the accused has not taken a stand in his behalf and where, actually, we submit that the use of the prior convictions in this case was to show nothing more than a disposition to commit crime which, we submit, would violate the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.

Now, the way this developed in this matter was like this.

The accused turned himself in, in Tucson, Arizona.

And, while he was in custody, he was interrogated by the police there.

Now, this was pre-Miranda and subsequent Escobedo.

So, the Escobedo rule applies.

During the course of his custodial interrogation, the petitioner volunteered that he had previously been convicted of an offense in Louisiana, which offense was actually a crime against nature, that after he served his time in New Orleans Parish Prison, that he went looking for the girl who had charged him with this crime, according to him, allegedly with a gun for the purpose of killing her.

Now, he did not find the girl.

He did not commit any offense in connection with it, and his statements relative to the prior offense or, generally, that let’s see-- I’ll see if I can read it.

During the course of his custodial interrogation in Tucson, Arizona, he referred to a prior conviction occurring in Louisiana, which, prior conviction was for a crime against nature occurring on July 12, 1963 and causing the petitioner to be sentenced to serve three months in a parish prison on March 25, 1964.

Petitioner further stated, during the course of his custodial interrogation, that after he served his time in New Orleans Parish Prison, he went looking for his alleged prosecutrix with a gun for the stated purpose of killing her.

However, he never did find her and, therefore, no further offense was committed.