Message of Gov. O. M. Roberts on appropriations and expenditures under the control of the governor to the seventeenth legislature of the state of of Texas, convened at the city of Austin, in regular session, January 11, 1881. Page: 17 of 23
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Appropriations under Control of the Governor.
has been committed; and whereas, all private citizens are permitted to
make arrests when felonies are committed in their presence, and to make
it the duty of officers to act promptly by giving information to them which
will be sufficient to induce the blelief that an offense has been committed,
thereby putting it in the power of every good citizen to aid in the executiod
of the laws for the prosecution of offenses; and whereas, the district
and county attorneys are required by law to prosecute officers for the
neglect of such duties when they are properly informed of such neglect;
" Therefore, to encourage good citizens to aid in the execution of the
laws, and to compensate them in part for their trouble in doing so, a
reward of fifty dollars will be given to a private citizen under the following
"1. When a homicide or robbery is committed in his presence, and he
arrests the offender at the scene of action, or pursues him and makes the
arrest, and delivers him to an officer, with such information as will be
necessary to commit the party or bind him over to answer for the offense.
"2. When a homicide or robbery has been committed, and the officers
do not take immediate steps to make the arrest, and a citizen gives the
necessary information to an officer, that causes him to take such action as
results in a prompt arrest of the offender and his being committed to jail
or bound over.
"3. When a homicide or robbery is committed, and the officers whose
duty it is to take proper steps to make the arrest of the offender fails to
do it, and a citizen gives to the district or county attorney such information
thereof as secures a prosecution and conviction for neglect of duty
in not taking such steps promptly.
"This offer of reward is not intended to apply to cases where the
offender voluntarily surrenders himself to be subject to the law-its leading
object being to prevent escape by an immediate arrest of the offender.
" The reward will be paid upon satisfactory proof of the facts entitling
the party to it, approved by the county attorney and county judge of the
county where the offense is committed.
"In testimony whereof, I hereto sign my name and cause
[L. s.] the seal of State to be affixed, at the city of Austin, this the
ninth day of October, A. D. 1880.
"(Signed) O. M. ROBERTS, Governor.
"By the Governor:
"(Signed). T. H. BowMA,
"Acting Secretary of State."
"ATTORNEY GENERAL'S OFFICE,
"AUSTIN, TEXAS, October 3, 1880.
" jBii Eicellency 0. M. Roberts, Governor of Texas:
" SIn--Your communication of recent date, in which you request the
opinion of this office upon certain questions therein propounded relative
to the duties of magistrates, peace officers, and citizens, in arresting
offenders against the penal laws of the State, has had my attention, and
in reply thereto I beg leave to submit the following:
"The Code of Criminal Procedure makes the justices of the Supreme
Court, judges of the Court of Appeals, district and county judges, county
commissioners, justices of the peace, mayors or recorders of incorporated
towns and cities, magistrates within the meaning of the laws of this
State. (Art. 42.)
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Roberts, Oran M. Message of Gov. O. M. Roberts on appropriations and expenditures under the control of the governor to the seventeenth legislature of the state of of Texas, convened at the city of Austin, in regular session, January 11, 1881., book, January 11, 1881; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth5832/m1/17/: accessed October 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .