Robert F. Burkardt, Pittsburgh, for appellant.
William S. Rahauser, Dist. Atty., Henry R. Smith, Jr., Asst. Dist. Atty., Pittsburgh, for appellee.
Before Rhodes, P. J., and Hirt, Reno, Dithrich, Ross, Arnold and Gunther, JJ.
[ 170 Pa. Super. Page 483]
A petition for writ of habeas corpus was filed by relator in the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County on April 30, 1951, whereon a rule was granted on the warden of the Western State Penitentiary and the District Attorney of Allegheny County requiring them to show cause why the writ should not issue. Answers were filed. A hearing was held before the late Judge Frank P. Patterson on June 5, 1951, who discharged the rule, denied the writ, and remanded relator
[ 170 Pa. Super. Page 484]
to the Western State Penitentiary. On June 15, 1951, relator filed his appeal in this Court.
Relator had pleaded guilty on August 21, 1941, in the Court of Oyer and Terminer of Allegheny County at No. 218, June Sessions, 1941, to the charge of burglary, and to the charge of attempted burglary at No. 847, June Sessions, 1941. He was sentenced to the Pennsylvania Industrial School at Camp Hill for an indefinite term. Testimony was taken on the pleas which were endorsed on the indictments and signed by the relator. The age of the relator was seventeen years and eight months at the time.
The petition alleges that the 'Court failed to advise Petitioner of his Constitutional Rights to be represented by Counsel,' and that 'in view of his extreme youth and inexperience' with criminal proceedings the lack of counsel 'placed him at a disadvantage which constituted a denial of Due Process under the Fourteenth Amendment to the Federal Constitution.' Previous to the commission of the crimes for which relator was sentenced to the reformatory or industrial school on August 21, 1941, he had been in juvenile court on three occasions, once for larceny in 1938, and again in 1939 for burglary. By reason of the latter offense he was committed to Thorn Hill School for boys, where he remained for seventeen months.
On August 14, 1942, relator was paroled from the Pennsylvania Industrial School at Camp Hill. On February 9, 1946, he was returned to that institution for parole violation upon his release from the United States Naval prison at Portsmouth, New Hampshire, where he had been held under sentence. On June 14, 1946, he was transferred to the Western State Penitentiary. See Act of April 28, 1887, P.L. 63, § 10, 61 P.S. § 495; Act of June 21, 1937, P.L. 1944, § 6, as amended by the Act of March 26, 1945, P.L. 60, 61 P.S. § 545-6. He was re-paroled from the Western State Penitentiary
[ 170 Pa. Super. Page 485]
on June 24, 1949, but he was subsequently returned to the penitentiary after pleading guilty to two charges of forgery ...