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COMMONWEALTH EX REL. REED v. MARONEY (03/22/61)

March 22, 1961

COMMONWEALTH EX REL. REED
v.
MARONEY, APPELLANT.



Appeal, No. 345, Oct. T., 1960, from order of Court of Common Pleas of Montgomery County, Feb. T., 1960, No. 199, in case of Commonwealth ex rel. James Reed v. James F. Maroney, Warden. Order reversed.

COUNSEL

Frank P. Lawley, Jr., Deputy Attorney General, with him Anne X. Alpern, Attorney General, for appellant.

Edward T. Bresnan, with him Maerz & Bresnan, for appellee.

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

Author: Woodside

[ 194 Pa. Super. Page 516]

OPINION BY WOODSIDE, J.

The prisoner, James Reed, questions here the right of the Deputy Commissioner for Treatment to transfer him from the State Correctional Institution at Camp Hill (formerly called the Pennsylvania Industrial School) to another state penal institution.

Reed was sentenced on September 5, 1958, to the Pennsylvania Industrial School for an indeterminate term on a charge of burglary. On February 19, 1959, the Deputy Commissioner for Treatment transferred him to the State Correctional Institution at Graterford and on August 26, 1959, from that institution to the State Correctional Institution at Pittsburgh. The latter two institutions were formerly known as penitentiaries.

Reed filed a writ of habeas corpus in the Court of Common Pleas of Montgomery County, from which county he had been sentenced, requesting the court to direct the prison authorities to transfer him back to Camp Hill. He contended there was no statutory authority to transfer him from that institution. The court below accepted the prisoner's contention and ordered the warden of the institution at Pittsburgh to transfer him to the institution at Camp Hill. The Attorney General, on behalf of the prison authorities, appealed to this Court.

The Attorney General argues that the question here presented should have been raised by mandamus and not by habeas corpus. We shall pass upon the merits of the case, but that should not be looked upon as an approval of habeas corpus as the proper procedure. See Commonwealth ex rel. Salerno v. Banmiller, 189 Pa. Superior Ct. 156, 149 A.2d 501 (1959).

The State Correctional Institution at Camp Hill, or the Pennsylvania Industrial School at White Hill, or the Pennsylvania Industrial Reformatory at Huntingdon, as it has been variously called, is an institution

[ 194 Pa. Super. Page 517]

    for young offenders created by the Act of April ...


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