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People v. Goodin

Supreme Court of California
69 P. 85 (1902)


Facts

A public road ran through a plot of land owned by B. F. Goodin’s (defendant) son. A new public road was constructed to replace this older road. Goodin dug up part of the old road where it crossed his son’s land and fenced it to be connected with the rest of the plot. Goodin was charged and convicted of willfully and feloniously injuring a public highway. At trial, Goodin claimed to have believed the road was abandoned and that he therefore had the legal right to dig up the portion on his son’s land. The trial court gave instructions to the jury Goodin’s good-faith belief that he had the legal right to dig up the road was not a defense. Goodin appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Haynes, J.)

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