Cases argued and decided in the Supreme Court of Texas, during the latter part of the Tyler term, 1874, and the first part of the Galveston term, 1875. Volume 42. Page: 223
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1875.] GORMAN . THE STATE. 223
Opinion of the Court.
and must be regarded as the assailant, of the grade and character
indicated by the acts and circumstances of the case.
If, however, the chastisement of the child does not exceed
the just limit of parental authority, the interference of the
mother would be unwarranted. And the father is fully justified
in using all reasonable and necessary force to protect himself
and to restrain and prevent her interference. But while
it is impossible to indicate with critical and exact accuracy the
precise amount and character of force and resistance which
may be used by the father for his protection and defense, and
to prevent the unwarranted interference of the wife and mother
with the exercise and discharge of his parental authority and
duty; still, if it clearly appears that the husband has assailed.
the wife not in his own defense, or to restrain her unwarranted
interference, but to punish and correct her for improper interference,
then, also, he becomes an assailant, and is liable to be
treated as a wrong-doer.
Whether the verdict in this case is justified by the facts,
when tested by the law applicable to them (it there was no
discrepancy between the indictment and the evidence), need
not be discussed by us at this time. For while we do not
intend to undertake an analysis of the charge given, we think
it quite evident that it presented a more restricted and limited
view of the authority and control which appellant was authorized
to exercise over his step-child, than that given him by
the law. And the charge of the court, as a whole, was, in
our opinion, calculated to divert the attention of the jury from
the true issues in this case. On the other hand, the first and
second instructions asked by appellant, are equally calculated
to mislead the jury, and, as asked, were unwarranted by the
The indictment did not charge that appellant was an
"adult male." Evidently, therefore, the only ground upon
which he could be convicted of an aggravated assault, was,
that the alleged assault was made with a whip. It was, therefore,
improper for the court to instruct the jury, as in effect it
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Texas. Supreme Court. Cases argued and decided in the Supreme Court of Texas, during the latter part of the Tyler term, 1874, and the first part of the Galveston term, 1875. Volume 42., book, 1881; St. Louis, Mo.. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth28531/m1/231/: accessed April 26, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .