Bell v. State (1911)

In Bell v. State, 62 Tex. Crim. 242, 243, 137 S.W. 670 (1911), the defendant had been convicted of "selling intoxicating liquor." 62 Tex. Crim. at 242. A former Texas statute allowed the otherwise prohibited sale of liquor when it was prescribed by a physician. See McCormick v. Tex. Liquor Control Bd., 141 S.W.2d 1004, 1005 (Tex. Civ. App.--Beaumont 1940, no writ). The defendant in Bell argued that the State was required to plead and prove he did not have a license to sell liquor by prescription and the sales were not made by prescription. 62 Tex. Crim. at 243. The Court of Criminal Appeals concluded that the State was not required to prove "these negative matters" because the circumstances surrounding the sale of the liquor were "peculiarly within the knowledge of the defendant." Id.