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COMMONWEALTH v. STARCHER (04/22/53)

THE SUPREME COURT OF PENNSYLVANIA


April 22, 1953

COMMONWEALTH, APPELLANT
v.
STARCHER

Appeal, No. 141, March T., 1952, from order of Court of Common Pleas of Butler County, Sept. T., 1951, No. 34, in case of Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. Billy Starcher. Order reversed.

COUNSEL

Randolph C. Ryder, Deputy Attorney General, with him Robert B. Greer, Jr., and Robert E. Woodside, attorney General, for appellant.

No argument was made nor brief submitted for appellee.

Before Stern, C.j., Stearne, Jones, Chidsey, Musmanno and Arnold, JJ.

Author: Stearne

[ 373 Pa. Page 412]

OPINION BY MR. JUSTICE ALLEN M. STEARNE

This is an appeal by the Commonwealth from an order of the court of common pleas setting aside an order of the Secretary of Revenue suspending defendant's reciprocal, nonresident's operating privileges for operating a motor vehicle.

The Vehicle Code, § 603, 75 PS 163, provides that a non-resident, duly licensed in his home state, may operate in Pennsylvania without obtaining a Pennsylvania

[ 373 Pa. Page 413]

    license. And § 615(d) of The Vehicle Code, 75 PS 192, provides that the Secretary of Revenue may suspend a non-resident's privilege to operate a motor vehicle in Pennsylvania for any reason which would justify suspension of a resident's license.

It therefore follows that what we said in Commonwealth v. Emerick, 373 Pa. 388, 96 A.2d 370, relating to suspension of operator's licenses for operating motor vehicles has similar application. By necessary implication, a non-resident under the above language of the Code possesses the same right of appeal under § 616 of The Vehicle Code, 75 PS 193, as a resident.

Billy Starcher, non-resident defendant, was charged by a state police officer on April 25, 1951, at 8:45 p.m., on a clear, dark night with driving a motor vehicle on a public highway at seventy miles an hour where the lawful speed limit was fifty miles an hour. Defendant does not deny the charge and offers no extenuating circumstances.

The learned court below revoked the Secretary of Revenue's order of suspension solely upon the ground of economic hardship. Such an order in the circumstances of this case constituted a manifest abuse of discretion.

The order is reversed at the cost of appellee.

Disposition

The order is reversed at the cost of appellee.

19530422

© 1998 VersusLaw Inc.



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