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UNITED STATES EX REL. COLLINS v. ASHE

November 9, 1948

UNITED STATES ex rel. COLLINS
v.
ASHE, Warden



The opinion of the court was delivered by: GIBSON

The Court, after further hearing and consideration, makes the following Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law:

Findings of Fact.

 1. The petitioner, Harry Collins, pleaded guilty in the Court of Quarter Sessions of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, to an indictment at No. 533 May Sessions, 1931, charging breaking and entering with an intent to steal. Section 2, Act of April 22, 1863, P.L. 531, as amended by the Act of March 13, 1901, P.L. 49.

 2. The Act violated provided a maximum term of imprisonment of ten years.

 3. On May 25, 1931, petitioner was sentenced by the above mentioned Court to ' * * * undergo an imprisonment of not less than 5 years or more than 20 years in the Western Penitentiary * * * . This sentence pursuant to Act of Assembly approved April 29, 1929, No. 373.' Habitual Criminals Act, 19 P.S.Pa. § 921 et seq.

 4. Prior to his sentence the petitioner was not notified by information or indictment of the charge which subjected him to the penalties of the Pennsylvania Habitual Criminals Act.

 5. Petitioner was represented by counsel at the time of his sentence.

 6. No appeal was taken from this sentence.

 7. In applying for his parole in 1936 the petitioner admitted to violations of law which subjected him to the penalties of the Habitual Criminals Act.

 8. After being paroled on November 25, 1940, petitioner was convicted in Wisconsin, April 20, 1942, on a charge of burglary and was sentenced to serve a term of from 1 to 5 years.

 9. Having been declared delinquent by the Supervisor of Paroles in 1941, the petitioner was returned to the Western Penitentiary on January 7, 1946, after the completion of his term in the Wisconsin institution, by the Oyer and Terminer Court of Allegheny County to complete the sentence under the Habitual Criminals Act.

 10. On February 1, 1946, Harry Collins filed a petition for a Writ of Habeas Corpus in the Court of Common Pleas for Allegheny County, alleging that he had been deprived of his liberty without due process of law as provided by the 14th Amendment to our Constitution.

 11. The Common Pleas Court's denial of the Writ was affirmed by the Superior Court in October 1946 in Commonwealth ex rel. Collins v. Ashe, 159 Pa.Super. 553, 49 A.2d 265.

 12. After the Pennsylvania Supreme Court denied his appeal, without an opinion, petitioner ...


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