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COMMONWEALTH v. PATTI ET AL. (04/15/65)

decided: April 15, 1965.

COMMONWEALTH
v.
PATTI ET AL., APPELLANTS



Appeals from judgments of Court of Quarter Sessions of Northampton County, April T., 1962, Nos. 124 and 125, and June T., 1962, Nos. 48, 49, 50, 51 and 52, in case of Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. Andrew Patti et al.

COUNSEL

Michael V. Franciosa, with him Gus Milides, for appellants.

Elwood M. Malos, Assistant District Attorney, with him Bernard V. O'Hare, Jr., District Attorney, for Commonwealth, appellee.

Ervin, P. J., Wright, Watkins, Montgomery, Jacobs, and Hoffman, JJ. (Flood, J., absent). Opinion by Montgomery, J. Ervin, P. J., and Wright, J., would affirm on the opinion of the court below.

Author: Montgomery

[ 205 Pa. Super. Page 380]

The three appellants were convicted of conspiracy to set up and establish gambling devices: Todaro and Patti, respectively, of pool selling and bookmaking, and Patti and Gill of occupying certain premises for gambling purposes and permitting them to be used for registering bets and wagers. Their motions for new trials or for the arrest of judgment having been overruled and sentences imposed, these appeals followed.

One of the questions being presented to us at this time relates to the legality of the search warrants by virtue of which much of the evidence against appellants was procured. Proper motions to suppress this evidence made before trial were overruled after hearing and objections to the admission of the evidence at the trial were also made and overruled.

[ 205 Pa. Super. Page 381]

The warrants in question were issued by Alderman D. Y. Schwab of the City of Easton on the request of Chief County Detective DiGiacinto of Northampton County, who had not investigated the charges against appellants. The trial court that heard the motions to suppress found that the warrants had been issued properly under the following circumstances.

On the morning of April 4, 1962, the Chief County Detective of Northampton County went to the office of Dudley Y. Schwab, an alderman of the City of Easton, to secure search warrants against defendants Todaro, Patti and "John Doe". According to the alderman, the detective, while unsworn, told him there was gambling paraphernalia in the places thereafter described in the warrants and on the persons of defendants. The detective informed the alderman of the names of the persons and the places in the city where the alleged gambling was occurring and its paraphernalia was located. The alderman testified, that based upon the information given him by the detective, he was of the opinion that search warrants should be issued. He, thereupon, prepared three affidavits in the form of informations.

The information with respect to the defendant Patti was to the effect that, "there is located on the person of Andrew Patti gambling paraphernalia and that the said Andrew Patti resides at 125 S. 13th Street, Easton, Pa., and your affiant (the Chief County Detective) verily believes, and there is just cause to suspect, and that your affiant does suspect that the said defendant has concealed on his person and at his said address gambling paraphernalia, and your affiant asks that a search warrant be issued for the said gambling paraphernalia . . ." The John Doe warrant was with respect to an apartment building located at 507 Northampton Street and it is alleged in the information that, "your affiant verily believes and there is just cause to

[ 205 Pa. Super. Page 382]

    suspect, and that your affiant does suspect that the said defendant has concealed in the said brick building located at said address, gambling paraphernalia . . ." The information with respect to defendant Todaro was to the effect that, "there is located on the person of Steve Todaro gambling paraphernalia . . . and your affiant verily believes, and there is just cause to suspect, and that your affiant does ...


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