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COMMONWEALTH v. BROWN (11/12/57)

November 12, 1957

COMMONWEALTH
v.
BROWN, APPELLANT.



Appeal, No. 198, Oct. T., 1957, from judgment of Court of Quarter Sessions of Berks County, Sept. T., 1956, No. 96, in case of Commonwealth v. Willard M. Brown. Judgment reversed.

COUNSEL

Edward Youngerman, with him Robert Morgan Smith, for appellant.

Frederick Edenharter, Assistant District Attorney, with him Frederick O. Brubaker, District Attorney, for appellee.

Before Rhodes, P.j., Hirt, Gunther, Wright, Woodside, Ervin, and Watkins, JJ.

Author: Woodside

[ 184 Pa. Super. Page 496]

OPINION BY WOODSIDE, J.

A jury found Willard M. Brown, guilty of felonious rape. After motions for a new trial and in arrest of judgment were refused, he was sentenced to serve two to four years in the Berks County Jail.

The indictment charged Brown, a 53 year old man, with having committed the offense on July 10, 1956, "and at divers other times within the three months last past," upon Miriam E. Garman.

The Commonwealth's evidence was fantastic. It showed that Miriam, a 16 year old girl, came to live with her mother and the defendant in January 1956. She slept in a room with her sister and two brothers, all younger than she. Her mother and the defendant slept together in another room. On January 15th and every day thereafter until July 10th, says Miriam, the defendant took her mother to a bus station at 6 o'clock in the morning, then returned to the home, picked Miriam up in his arms from her bed, carried her to his room, locked the door, took "all (her) clothes off," undressed himself, tied her mouth shut with a rag, and forced her to have intercourse with him. She repeatedly stated that this entire procedure, including the gagging, occurred every day between January 15th and July 10th, including the time she was menstruating.

When first asked on direct examination whether she objected to what Brown did, she replied "no". Then to such leading questions by the district attorney as "Did you push him away?" and "Were you fighting him?" she answered "yes". Later, however, when asked

[ 184 Pa. Super. Page 497]

    by the district attorney "Did you agree he should do this?" she replied, "Yes".

According to Miriam, she told her mother about the relations with Brown and "she said I should let him go." The mother testified that Miriam's sister told her about the affair but that Miriam denied it. The mother said she believed Miriam because her sister frequently lied. Miriam said she left the Brown home in July because she did not like it, but her fantasy is demonstrated by her later testimony that she saw her father July 9, 1956, and that he told her to go to her stepmother. She admitted that her father had ...


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