Cicenia v. Lagay

PETITIONER: Cicenia
RESPONDENT: Lagay
LOCATION: United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Eastern Division

DOCKET NO.: 177
DECIDED BY: Warren Court (1957-1958)
LOWER COURT: United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit

CITATION: 357 US 504 (1958)
ARGUED: Apr 02, 1958
DECIDED: Jun 30, 1958

Facts of the case

Question

Media for Cicenia v. Lagay

Audio Transcription for Oral Argument - April 02, 1958 (Part 1) in Cicenia v. Lagay

Audio Transcription for Oral Argument - April 02, 1958 (Part 2) in Cicenia v. Lagay

Earl Warren:

-- summarize -- (Inaudible) I don't know --

C. William Caruso:

Mr. Chief Justice, but I would like to address one sentence to Mr. Justice Frankfurter.

I think he asked the pointed question as to whether we question the accuracy of Judge Forman's statement which is pointed out in which in his opinion, which he said not only was the petitioner deprived of the cherished American rights but the dignity of his legal profession was demeaned and so forth.

The fact of the matter, that in the hearing, there never was any dispute about that.

In fact, at 4 o'clock in the afternoon, the assistant prosecutor went down and met Mr. Palmieri.

Mr. Palmieri said, “I'd like to see Cicenia can I hear him out.

Mr. Palmieri -- Mr. McCune (ph), the assistant prosecutor politely told, "Just as soon as we complete our investigation" although there was no denial about it.

Felix Frankfurter:

Would you be good enough to state on behalf of New Jersey why -- how you justify denying to a fellow your assessment up for a serious crime access to or rather the opportunity for his lawyer, to have access to his client.

What is the -- what is the justification for that in your view?

C. William Caruso:

Mr. Justice Frankfurter, the rule of law in New Jersey that a lawyer is not entitled to see his client during the time between arrest and arraignment.

Felix Frankfurter:

I understand that rule of law.

C. William Caruso:

That is the reason.

Felix Frankfurter:

Yes, but that is --

C. William Caruso:

It's the rule.

Felix Frankfurter:

But I want to know what the reason is not from the point of view of whether it's more or less convenient but from the point of view of that ultimate question, whether that is such an unfairness that it may be challenged under the Fourteenth -- under the Due Process Clause because that's the only question we have here, not general consideration whether it's convenient or inconvenient, desirable or undesirable at least speaking for myself.

There's an ultimate question of whether this come forth with the kind of treatment that anybody you and I would like to have under similar circumstances.

C. William Caruso:

Well, I'd say we stood by New Jersey law not to hold this --.

Felix Frankfurter:

Yes, but you're now here in the United States Supreme Court Law and have to decide this question.

C. William Caruso:

You haven't said so yet.

Felix Frankfurter:

No, but that's why I am asking.

C. William Caruso:

You haven't said so yet.

Felix Frankfurter:

If I were in Jersey, that would be a perfect answer.

C. William Caruso:

That was our position.

Now, if you want to interpret the Sixth Amendment, to me --

Felix Frankfurter:

I won't do that.

C. William Caruso:

Anytime.

Felix Frankfurter:

I won't do that myself.

C. William Caruso:

I've been a practicing criminal lawyer for many years.

And I know -- let's look at it practically.

I told this to the Circuit Court of Appeals.