Martin v. State

Procedural History

Court of Appeals, Alabama


  • Public drunkenness
  • Defendant claims that he was at home drunk, and then the officer drove him to the highway where the profanity ensued…


  • Statue states…..
  • “Any person who, while intoxicated or drunk, appears in public place where one or more persons are present…and manifests a drunken condition by boisterous or indecent conduct, or loud and profane discourse, shall, on conviction, be fined.”
  • Under this discourse, a voluntary appearance is pre-supposed.
  • Was this person involuntarily and forcibly carried to that place by the arresting officer?
  • Was Martin under this statue of public drunkenness?


  • No, he wasn’t.


  • It is pre-supposed that it is a voluntary appearance in public place where pubic drunkenness must occur. In this case, Martin was brought to public place against his own will.


  • Reversed and rendered.


  • Requirement of a voluntary act (model penal code).
  1. Person is not guilty of an offense unless his liability is based on conduct that includes voluntary actions.
  2. Possession is an act, within the meaning of this section, IF the possessor knowingly procured or received the thing possessed or was aware of his control thereof for a sufficient period to have been able to terminate his possession.

*** How precisely can draw the voluntary/involuntary distinction?***

  • Look at People vs. Grant.

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