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COMMONWEALTH EX REL. TURK v. ASHE (07/20/50)

July 20, 1950

COMMONWEALTH EX REL. TURK
v.
ASHE



COUNSEL

Milton W. Lamproplos, Pittsburgh, for appellant.

Frank J. Docktor, Dist. Atty. Wm. C. Porter, First Asst. Dist. Atty., Wm. R. Dennison, Jr., Asst. Dist. Atty., all of Washington, for appellee.

Before Rhodes, P. J., and Hirt, Reno, Dithrich, Ross and Arnold, JJ.

Author: Arnold

[ 167 Pa. Super. Page 323]

ARNOLD, Judge.

The Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County dismissed a petition for a writ of habeas corpus presented by the relator, Mike Turk, an inmate of the Western State Penitentiary, and he appealed. The relator requested counsel on his appeal, and this Court

[ 167 Pa. Super. Page 324]

    appointed Milton W. Lamproplos, Esq., to represent him. We express our thanks to counsel for his oral argument and able brief, both of which exhibited a high degree of skill and industry.

On January 28, 1948, Turk was indicted in Washington County for consensual rape upon his daughter, Ester Turk, and the case went to trial in the oyer and terminer on February 9, 1948. Throughout this trial Turk was represented by counsel chosen and employed by him. On February 10, 1948, the jury returned a verdict of guilty. There was no motion for a new trial. On February 17, 1948, Turk was sentenced to a term of not less than seven and one-half years nor more than fifteen years, effective from February 10, 1948. From this judgment he did not appeal.

It is an admitted fact that when the case was tried in the Oyer and Terminer of Washington County neither the testimony nor the charge of the court was stenographically reported.

It is alleged that this omission constituted a violation of the due process provision of the Federal Constitution, Amendment 14, and also of the Pennsylvania Constitution of 1874, Article I, Section 9, P.S. to the effect that a person shall not be deprived of his liberty unless by 'the law of the land.'*fn1 It is also asserted that Turk was deprived of procedure under which his conviction might have been reviewed, and he alleges that trial errors were committed.

Court stenographers or reporters were unknown to the common law. Their appointment and duties are purely statutory and there ...


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