Turner v. City of Memphis

PETITIONER: Turner
RESPONDENT: City of Memphis
LOCATION: U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia

DOCKET NO.: 84
DECIDED BY: Warren Court (1958-1962)
LOWER COURT:

CITATION: 369 US 350 (1962)
ARGUED: Feb 27, 1962
DECIDED: Mar 16, 1962

Facts of the case

Question

Media for Turner v. City of Memphis

Audio Transcription for Oral Argument - February 27, 1962 in Turner v. City of Memphis

Earl Warren:

Number 84, Jesse Turner, Appellant, versus City of Memphis, et al.

Mrs. Motley.

Constance Baker Motley:

Mr. Chief Justice, may it please the Court.

Appellant appealed to this Court pursuant to Title 28, Section 1253 from an order entered by a three-judge District Court for the Western District of Tennessee, Western Division on February 10th, 1961.

The order which was entered after a trial on the merits state all further proceedings in this cause pending suit for declaratory judgment by the appellant for construction of the state statute under consideration.

In this case, appellant challenges the refusal of the appellee, City of Memphis and its lessee, Dobbs Houses to serve Negroes in the main dining room of the Dobbs Houses' Restaurant which is located in the Memphis Municipal Airport.

The appellant's claim is that such refusal in the light of the conceded facts in this case and set of law violates rights secured to him and members of his class by the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment of the Federal Constitution and that he was entitled to the issuance of an immediate permanent injunction.

However, in view of this Court's decision on yesterday in the case of Bailey against Patterson, holding that three judges are not required, when as here, prior decisions by this Court make frivolous any claim that a state statute is not unconstitutional on its face, appellant request this Court to dispose of this case in the same manner in which it disposed of the Bailey case or in the alternative to consider the papers on this appeal as a petition for certiorari to the Court of Appeals of the Sixth Circuit before judgment where there is presently pending an appeal from the same order sought to be reviewed by this Court.

And in support of this request, appellant --

William J. Brennan, Jr.:

Have you stated those facts?

Constance Baker Motley:

Pardon me.

William J. Brennan, Jr.:

All the types of appeals in the Court of Appeals?

Constance Baker Motley:

Yes, sir.

Potter Stewart:

At the same time as you file a petition for certiorari?

Constance Baker Motley:

Now, we have not filed --

Potter Stewart:

Or man -- mandamus here, is that it?

Constance Baker Motley:

Pardon me.

Potter Stewart:

I'm -- tell me what is here.

Constance Baker Motley:

Please let's go down the line.

The only thing which is here is the appeal from the order entered below.

Potter Stewart:

An appeal here?

Constance Baker Motley:

That's right.

Potter Stewart:

And a petition for certiorari to the Court of Appeals?

Constance Baker Motley:

No, sir.

Potter Stewart:

A -- appeal in the Court of Appeals.

Constance Baker Motley:

That's right.

William J. Brennan, Jr.:

Upon the same order that's what I'm what trying to point out.

Constance Baker Motley:

Yes, sir, the exact same order and the same record is now before the Court of Appeals because we had some doubt that this was properly a three-judge court case.

It's to protect ourselves.

We perfected an appeal to the Court of Appeals.