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COMMONWEALTH v. CHAPMAN (06/11/58)

June 11, 1958

COMMONWEALTH
v.
CHAPMAN, APPELLANT.



Appeals, Nos. 78, 79 and 80, April T., 1958, from judgments of Court of Oyer and Terminer and General Jail Delivery of Allegheny County, Jan. T., 1956, Nos. 173, 174 and 175,*fn1 in case of Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. Marion C. Chapman. Judgments affirmed.

COUNSEL

Harold Gondelman, with him Louis Rosenfield, for appellant.

William Claney Smith, Assistant District Attorney, with him Edward C. Boyle, District Attorney, for appellee.

Before Hirt, Gunther, Wright, Woodside, Ervin, and Watkins, JJ. (rhodes, P.j., absent).

Author: Watkins

[ 186 Pa. Super. Page 633]

OPINION BY WATKINS, J.

These are appeals from the judgments of sentence imposed, by the Court of Quarter Sessions of Allegheny County, upon Marion C. Chapman, the appellant.

The appellant, a retired policeman of the City of Pittsburgh was charged in separate indictments for violating Par. 1, § 493, of the Liquor Code, 47 PS § 4-493, which makes it unlawful for "... any other person, to sell, furnish or give away any liquor or malt or brewed beverages... to any minor..."; for violating the Act of June 3, 1953, P.L. 277, § 1, 18 PS § 4532, which provides: "Whoever, being of the age of twenty-one years and upwards, by any act corrupts or tends to corrupt the morals of any child under the age of eighteen years... is guilty of a misdemeanor..."; and with the possession of obscene literature which was allegedly exhibited to a minor, contrary to the Act of June 24, 1939, P.L. 872, § 524, 18 PS § 4524. He was also charged, in two indictments, with sodomy. All five indictments were tried together before a jury. The jury found him not guilty as to the sodomy indictments and guilty as to the other three charges. Motions in

[ 186 Pa. Super. Page 634]

    arrest of judgment and for a new trial were denied and he was sentenced on February 14, 1958.

The question involved in these appeals is whether there was sufficient evidence to sustain these convictions.

Leslie Gibson, who at the time of the alleged offenses, was 10 years of age, testified that some time during the summer of 1955 the appellant, his neighbor, invited the minor to his apartment to look at some guns. Thereafter he visited the apartment of the appellant on numerous occasions where the circumstances occurred that resulted in these prosecutions. He testified that the appellant showed him pictures and that the pictures were of people in the nude. The appellant showed him these pictures while the minor was in the appellant's bedroom and had taken the pictures, that he exhibited to the minor, from a drawer of the desk in that bedroom. The pictures were taken from the desk in the presence of the minor and exhibited to him and he described them by saying, "there was a lady in the nude and a man and that there were other ones just like it."

Officers then testified, that, on this information, they went to the bedroom of the appellant and took from one of the drawers in the desk, described by the minor, some 40 pictures which showed nude men and women in various pornographic positions. The appellant admits that these pictures were obscene but denies possession of them and denies exhibiting them to the minor. He testified that the desk from which they were taken belonged to his son, that it was locked, and that his wife had possession of the key. These pictures were introduced into evidence and exhibited to the jury. The child ...


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