Payne v. Arkansas/Dissent Clark

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United States Supreme Court

356 U.S. 560

Payne  v.  Arkansas

 Argued: March 3, 1958. --- Decided: May 19, 1958

Mr. Justice CLARK, dissenting.

I believe that on this record the state courts properly held petitioner's confession voluntary. Moreover, even if the confession be deemed coerced, there is sufficient other evidence of guilt to sustain the conviction on the authority of Stein v. People of State of New York, 1953, 346 U.S. 156, 188-194, 73 S.Ct. 1077, 1094-1098, 97 L.Ed. 1522. Just five years ago this Court established in Stein that there was no constitutional error 'if the jury admitted and relied on the confession,' or 'rejected it and convicted on other evidence.' 346 U.S. at pages 193-194, 73 S.Ct. at page 1097. For purpose of making the latter determination, this Court assumed there that the confession was found coerced by the jury. It makes no difference that the determination of coercion here is by this Court rather than by the jury, for as is evident from the majority opinion, the inquiry is the same-whether the confession was coerced. I must apply the Stein rule here because the Arkansas procedure on admission of challenged confessions is identical to that which we approved in that case. See Nolan v. State, 205 Ark. 103, 104, 167 S.W.2d 503, 504; Dinwiddie v. State, 202 Ark. 562, 570, 151 S.W.2d 93, 95, 96.


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