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COMMONWEALTH v. TABER ET AL. (11/14/58)

November 14, 1958

COMMONWEALTH
v.
TABER ET AL., APPELLANTS.



Appeals, Nos. 21 and 22, Feb. T., 1959, from judgments of Court of Quarter Sessions of Susquehanna County, Jan. T., 1958, Nos. 11 and 12, in cases of Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. Earl Taber, and Same v. Kenneth Hoal. Judgments affirmed.

COUNSEL

Martin D. O'Malley, for appellants.

Robert G. Dean, District Attorney, for appellee.

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

[ 188 Pa. Super. Page 416]

OPINION PER CURIAM

The judgment of sentence of the court below in each case is affirmed on the opinion of Judge BODIE, specially presiding in the Court of Quarter Sessions of Susquehanna County, as reported in 14 Pa.D. & C.2d 591.

ING OPINION BY GUNTHER, J.:

Earl Taber, defendant, was convicted for violation of the penal provision of the so-called "blue laws" of this Commonwealth, the Act of 1939, June 24, P.L. 872, section 699.4. This provision is substantially the same as that contained in the Act of 1794, April 22, 3 Smith Laws 177, section 1, which, in turn, were substantial reenactments of the Act of 1786, September 25, which succeed the Act of 1779, March 14, entitled "An Act for the suppression of vice and immorality." The Act of 1939 provides in part as follows:

"Whoever does or performs any worldly employment or business whatsoever on the Lord's day, commonly

[ 188 Pa. Super. Page 417]

    called Sunday (works of necessity and charity only excepted), or uses or practices any game, hunting, shooting, sport or diversion whatsoever on the same day not authorized by law, shall, upon conviction thereof in a summary proceeding, be sentenced to pay a fine of four dollars ( $4), for the use of the Commonwealth, or, in default of the payment thereof, shall suffer six (6) days' imprisonment."

Sometime prior to November 17, 1957, there appeared notices of a "turkey shoot" on the Frigner farm in Jackson Township, Susquehanna County, sponsored by the Lakeview Rod and Gun Club, Kenneth Hoal, Chairman. On November 17, 1957, Frederick Hoal, a brother of Kenneth Hoal, went to the farm about one o'clock p.m., and talked with Kenneth Hoal and the defendant, Earl Taber, and asked them to stop the turkey shoot as it was against the law. He returned later and observed the defendant and Kenneth Hoal shooting at targets and estimated that approximately sixty people were on the farm. Frederick Hoal thereafter appeared before a justice of the peace and filed information against defendant, alleging violation of the Sunday Laws. From a summary conviction, both defendant and Kenneth Hoal took separate appeals to the court below and both were found guilty as charged.

The act here involved does not come under the hunting or shooting at turkeys; on the contrary, it is conceded by all that the "turkey shoot" here engaged in is a contest where the participants shoot at targets and the winners, for their skills, are rewarded with a turkey as a prize. If, therefore, the defendant was guilty of anything, he was guilty of shooting at a target out in the open countryside ...


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