The testimony discloses certain independent and unconnected circumstances upon which the State relied for conviction. The principle of law declared in S. v. Goodson, 107 N. C., 798, is pertinent to tbe facts disclosed in ibis case. Goodson was convicted of murder and sentenced to death. The Court said: “We have examined with much care and scrutiny the evidence sent up as part of the case stated on appeal, and are of opinion that it was not sufficient to prove the prisoner’s guilt, or to go to the jury for that purpose. Accepting tbe evidence as true, and sufficient to .prove tbe facts to wbicb it .related, and giving these facts, severally and collectively, and in their bearing each upon tbe other, due weight, in any view of them they simply raise a strong suspicion of bis guilt. Tbe evidence pointing to tbe prisoner is circumstantial. Tbe facts may be true; they may be taken, in any combination of them of wbicb in their nature they are capable, and they fail to prove bis guilt; they are inconclusive as to tbe material fact of guilt. . . . This full summary of tbe incriminating facts, taken in tbe strongest view of them adverse to tbe prisoner, excite suspicion in tbe just mind tbat be is guilty, but such view is far from excluding tbe rational conclusion tbat some other unknown person may be tbe guilty party. Tbe mind is not simply left in a state of hesitancy and anxious doubt — it refuses to reach a conclusion.”
So, in tbe present case, much could perhaps be written upon tbe various aspects of circumstantial evidence as a means of arriving at ultimate truth. Much, too, could be written with reference to weighing these circumstances and knitting them together in various and sundry combinations. But after all, tbe whole matter resolves itself into an interpretation of tbe record. As to this, different minds will reach different conclusions. Although we should assemble tbe precedents and authorities in martial array and dissect each one, tbe inevitable and ultimate question would still be ever present: “How do you apply these principles to tbe present record?”
After a diligent investigation, by tbe entire Court, of tbe records and briefs, three of us are of tbe opinion tbat tbe circumstances relied upon for conviction create suspicion more or less grave, but do not rise to tbat *22dignity and import which, the law recognizes as competent evidence upon the charge laid in the bill of indictment.' After the same diligent investigation, two of us hold the contrary view.
In this situation, therefore, we hold that the judgment of nonsuit duly made at the close of the entire testimony should have been allowed.