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Mempa v. Rhay

United States Supreme Court
389 U.S. 128 (1967)


Mempa (defendant) was convicted of the offense of joyriding and placed on probation for two years on the condition that he first spend 30 days in the county jail, after which his sentencing was deferred. Four months later, the prosecuting attorney moved that Mempa’s probationary status be revoked because Mempa was involved in a burglary. At the hearing for the burglary, Mempa, then 17 years old, was accompanied by his stepfather, but was without counsel and had not been asked whether he wished to have counsel appointed. At the hearing, Mempa admitted participating in the burglary. A probationary officer testified that he had information that Mempa had been involved in the burglary, but that Mempa had earlier denied any involvement. No one cross-examined the probationary officer. The court revoked Mempa’s probationary status and he was sentenced to 10 years in the penitentiary.

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