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The State of Rhode-Island and Providence Plantations. [seal.] sc. To the sheriffs of our several counties and their deputies,
greeting : We command you, that the body of
of by of imprisoned and restrained of his liberty, as it is said, you take and have before our supreme court, holden at within and for the county of immediately after the receipt of this writ, to do and receive whatever said court shall then consider concerning him in this behalf; and summon the said
then and there to appear before our said court, to show the cause of the taking and detaining of the said and have you there this writ with your doings thereon. Witness at
this day of in
Sec. 5. When the writ is issued by the supreme court in session, it shall be signed by the clerk and tested like other writs in this state ; when issued by a justice, it shall be signed
Sec. 6. If the court to which the writ is returnable shall be adjourned before its return, the return shall be made before any one of the justices of said court. If issued by a single justice and the court shall be in session before its return, he may and shall adjourn the case into court, to be there heard and determined in like manner as if it had been returned into the court. Sec. 7.
If the party is confined in a common jail, or in the custody of any civil officer, the court or justice who grants the writ, shall certify thereon the sum to be paid for the expense of bringing him from the place of imprisonment; and the officer to whom the writ is directed shall not be bound to obey it unless that sum be paid or tendered to him.
Sec. 8. Any person to whom the writ is directed shall receive it, and upon payment or tender of charges, if any demandable for the execution of it, he shall make due return thereof within three days after receiving it.
Sec. 9. If the writ be directed to any sheriff, deputy sheriff, keeper of any jail
, marshal or deputy marshal, as herein provided, such officer shall state in his return thereon:
First. Whether he has or has not the party in his custody or power, or under restraint.
Secondly. If he has the party in his custody or power, or under restraint, he shall set forth at large the authority, and the true and whole cause of such imprisonment or restraint, with a copy of the writ, warrant or other process, if any, upon which the party is detained; and
Thirdly. if he has had the party in his custody or power, or under restraint, and has transferred such custody or restraint to another, he shall state particularly to whom, at what time, for what cause, and by what authority such transfer was made. If the writ be directed to no such officer, the person summoned shall state the same particulars in writing to the court or justice before whom the writ is returnable.
Sec. 10. The return or statement shall be signed by the person making it, and it shall also be sworn to by him, unless he is a sworn public officer, and shall make the return in his official capacity
Sec. 11. The person who makes the return or statement, shall at the same time bring the body of the party, if in his custody or power, or under his restraint, according to the command of the writ, unless prevented by the sickness or infirmity of the party.
SEC. 12. When from the sickness or infirmity of the party he cannot, without danger, be brought to the place appointed for the return of the writ, that fact shall be stated in the return ; and if it be proved to the satisfaction of the court or justice, the said court or justice may proceed to the jail or other place where the party is confined, and there make the examination; or may adjourn the same to another time, or may make such other order in the case as law and justice shall require.
Sec. 13. When the writ of habeas corpus is returned, the court or justice shall, without delay, proceed to examine the causes of the imprisonment or restraint; but the examination may be adjourned from time, to time as circumstances may require.
Sec. 14. When it appears from the return of the writ or otherwise, that the party is detained on any process under which any other person has an interest in continuing his imprisonment or restraint, the party shall not be discharged until sufficient notice shall have been given to such other person or his attorney, if within the state, or within thirty miles of the place of examination, to appear and object to such discharge if he thinks fit; which notice shall be given by the party imprisoned, in the manner prescribed by the court or justice ; or in default thereof he shall be remanded to the custody of the person against whom the writ of habeas corpus issued. Sec. 15. When it appears from the return of the writ or otherwise, that the party is imprisoned on any criminal accusation, he shall not be discharged until sufficient notice shall have been given to the attorney general, or to the complainant in the matter, that he may appear and object to the discharge, if he thinks fit; which notice shall be given by the party imprisoned, in the manner prescribed by the court or justice; or in default thereof he shall be remanded to the custody of the person against whom the writ of habeas corpus issued.
Sec. 16. The party imprisoned or restrained may deny any of the facts set forth in the return or statement, and may allege any other facts that may be material in the case; and the court or justice shall proceed in a summary way to examine the causes of imprisonment or restraint, and to hear the evidence that may be produced by any person, interested and authorized to appear, both in support of such imprisonment or restraint and against it, and thereupon to dispose of the party as law and justice shall require.
Sec. 17. If no legal cause can be shown for the imprisonment or restraint, the court or justice shall discharge the party therefrom.
Sec. 18. If the party is detained for any cause or offence for which he is bailable, of right, he shall be admitted to bail, if sufficient bail be offered ; and if not, he shall be remanded, with an order of the court or justice, expressing the sum in which he shall be held to bail, and the court at which he shall be required to appear; and any justice of the peace may, at any time before the sitting of said court, bail the party pursuant to such order.
Sec. 19. If the party is committed on mesne process in any civil action, for want of bail, and if it shall appear that the sum for which bail is required is excessive and unreasonable, the court or justice shall decide what bail is reasonable, and shall order, that on giving such bail the party shall be discharged.
Sec. 20. If the party is lawfully imprisoned or restrained, and is not entitled to be enlarged on giving bail, he shall be remanded to the person from whose custody he was taken, or to such other person or officer as by law is authorized to detain him.
Sec. 21. Until judgment be given, the court or justice may remand the party, or may bail him to appear from day to day, or may commit him to the sheriff of the county, or place him under such other care and custody as the circumstances of the case may require.
Sec. 22. Any officer who shall refuse or neglect, for six hours, to deliver a true copy of the warrant or process, by which he detains any prisoner, to any person who shall demand such copy, and tender the fees therefor, shall forfeit and pay to such prisoner the sum of one hundred dollars.
Sec. 23. If any person to whom such writ of habeas corpus
shall be directed shall refuse to receive the same, or shall neglect to obey and execute it, according to the provisions of this act, and no sufficient excuse shall be shown for such refusal or neglect, the court or justice before whom the writ is returnable shall proceed forthwith, by process of attachment as for a contempt, to compel obedience to the writ, and to punish the person guilty of the contempt.
Sec. 24. If such attachment shall be issued against a sheriff or his deputy, it may be directed to any town sergeant, or to any other person, to be designated therein, who shall have full power to execute the same; and if the sheriff or deputy should be committed upon such process, he may be committed to the jail of any other county than his own.
Sec. 25. Upon such refusal or neglect of the person to whom the writ of habeas corpus is directed, the court or justice may also issue a precept to any officer or other person to be designated therein, commanding him to bring forthwith before such court or justice, the person for whose benefit the writ of habeas corpus was issued; and the prisoner shall be thereupon discharged, bailed or remanded, in like manner as if he had been brought in upon the writ of habeas corpus.
Sec. 26. Every person guilty of such refusal, or neglect to receive and execute a writ of habeas corpus, shall moreover forfeit and pay to the party aggrieved thereby, a sum not exceeding one thousand dollars.
Sec. 27. If any one who has in custody or under his power any person entitled to any writ of habeas corpus, whether any writ has issued or not, shall, with intent to elude the service of such writ, or to avoid the effect thereof, transfer such prisoner to the custody, or place him under the power or control of any other person, or conceal him, or change the place of his confinement, the person so offending shall forfeit and pay to the party aggrieved thereby a sum not exceeding one thousand dollars.
Sec. 28. The recovery of any penalty imposed by this act shall not bar any action at the common law for false imprisonment, or for a false return to the writ of habeas
corpus, or for any other injury or damage sustained by the aggrieved party.
Sec. 29. No person who has been discharged upon a writ of habeas corpus shall be again imprisoned or restrained for the same cause, unless he shall be indicted therefor, or convicted thereof, or committed for want of bail by some court of record having jurisdiction of the cause; or unless after a discharge for defect of proof, or for some material defect in the commitment, in a criminal case, he shall be again arrested on sufficient proof, and committed by legal process for the same offence.
Sec. 30. Nothing contained in this act shall be construed to restrain the power of the supreme court, or any one of the justices thereof, to issue a writ of habeas corpus at their discretion ; and thereupon to bail any person, for whatever cause he may be committed or restrained, or to discharge him, as law and justice shall require.
Sec. 31. When any person is committed to jail on any criminal accusation, for want of bail, any justice of the court of common pleas, or justice of the peace of the same county, may admit him to bail, in like manner as might have been done by the court or magistrate who committed him ; and the said justices, respectively, shall have power to issue a writ of habeas corpus, and to cause such prisoner to be brought before them, when it shall be necessary for the purpose expressed in this section.
Sec. 32. Nothing contained in this act shall be construed to restrain the power of any court to issue a writ of habeas corpus, when necessary, to bring before them any prisoner for trial, in any criminal case lawfully pending in the same court; or to bring in any prisoner to be examined as a witness in any suit or proceeding, civil or criminal, pending in such court, when they shall think the personal attendance and examination of the witness necessary for the attainment of justice.
An Act concerning Actions of Account. SECTION
SECTION 1. Action of account may be sustained by against him-auditors may administer
one tenant in common, &c., against oaths--party refusing to be sworn may his fellow commoner.
be committed. 2. Defendant may appeal from judgment. 5. Court shall render judgment on report 3. Court shall appoint auditors in case of of auditors--for costs, &c. final judgment to account.
6. Award as conclusive if signed by ma4. Defendant neglecting to appear, &c., jor part of auditors as if signed by all,
auditors may award whole demand if all met. It is enacted by the General Assembly, as follows:
Section 1. When two or more persons have and hold any estate, interest or property, whether real or personal, in