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CASE v. NEBRASKA

decided: May 24, 1965.

CASE
v.
NEBRASKA



CERTIORARI TO THE SUPREME COURT OF NEBRASKA.

Warren, Black, Douglas, Clark, Harlan, Brennan, Stewart, White, Goldberg

Author: Per Curiam

[ 381 U.S. Page 336]

 Petitioner sought a writ of habeas corpus in the District Court for Lancaster County, Nebraska, alleging that he was unconstitutionally denied the assistance of counsel when he entered a plea of guilty in that court to a charge of burglary. The trial court dismissed the petition without a hearing, and filed no opinion. The Nebraska Supreme Court affirmed. 177 Neb. 404, 129 N. W. 2d 107. The Supreme Court's opinion recognized that petitioner's allegations, if true, would establish a violation of the Federal Constitution. 177 Neb., at 410, 129 N. W. 2d, at 111. The Supreme Court held, however, that, in Nebraska,

[ 381 U.S. Page 337]

     "Habeas corpus is not available to discharge a prisoner from a sentence of penal servitude if the court imposing it had jurisdiction of the offense and of the person charged with the crime, and the sentence was within the power of the court." 177 Neb., at 412, 129 N. W. 2d, at 112. We granted certiorari, 379 U.S. 958, to decide whether the Fourteenth Amendment requires that the States afford state prisoners some adequate corrective process for the hearing and determination of claims of violation of federal constitutional guarantees.

After certiorari was granted, the Nebraska Legislature enacted a statute providing a post-conviction procedure. Neb. Leg. Bill 836, Seventy-fifth Session, effective April 12, 1965. On its face, the statute provides for a hearing of petitions such as this one, alleging denial of federal constitutional rights. Therefore, the judgment is vacated and the cause remanded to the Nebraska Supreme Court for reconsideration in light of the supervening statute.

It is so ordered.

Disposition

177 Neb. 404, 129 N. W. 2d 107, vacated and remanded.

MR. JUSTICE CLARK, concurring.

As the Court points out, we granted certiorari in this case "to decide whether the Fourteenth Amendment requires that the States afford state prisoners some adequate corrective process for the hearing and determination of claims of violation of federal constitutional guarantees." Happily, Nebraska in the interim has adopted just such a procedure thus obviating the necessity of our passing upon the question.

It should be pointed out, however, that as early as 1949 this Court in Young v. Ragen, 337 U.S. 235, articulated the principle that the States must afford prisoners some "clearly defined method by which they may raise claims of denial of federal rights." Id., at ...


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