Appeals from judgment of Court of Quarter Sessions of Delaware County, Dec. T., 1963, Nos. 110 and 111, in case of Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. Joseph Ametrane.
Joseph W. deFuria, with him deFuria, Larkin & deFuria, for appellant.
Ralph B. D'Iorio, Assistant District Attorney, with him Domenic D. Jerome, First Assistant District Attorney, and Jacques H. Fox, District Attorney, for Commonwealth, appellee.
Ervin, Wright, Woodside, Watkins, Montgomery, and Flood, JJ. (Rhodes, P. J., absent). Opinion by Ervin, P. J.
[ 205 Pa. Super. Page 569]
On August 27, 1963, a detective of the District Attorney's office of Delaware County entered and searched the premises 316 West Ninth Street, Chester, Pennsylvania, and arrested Joseph Ametrane, the appellant. The detective, John MacCrory, had filed complaints for warrants authorizing a search of the premises and Ametrane, and for a body or arrest warrant. The warrants were issued by a justice of the peace and were in MacCrory's possession when the searches and the arrest were made.
Ametrane's application and petition to suppress evidence, which was obtained as a result of the search, were dismissed. He was convicted on two counts on indictment No. 110, one setting up a gambling establishment (18 PS § 4605) and one for aiding and assisting others to gamble (18 PS § 4612). On indictment No. 111 he was convicted of bookmaking (18 PS § 4607).
Motions in arrest of judgment and for a new trial were dismissed and Ametrane was sentenced on indictment No. 110 to serve three months in prison and to pay a fine of $300.00. Sentence was suspended on indictment No. 111.
In these appeals Ametrane raises four questions: (1) the sufficiency of the warrants, (2) the legality of the search and seizures, (3) the admissibility into evidence
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of the prosecution question, "Is the defendant a bookie?" and the answer thereto by an expert witness, and (4) the sufficiency of the evidence to support the convictions.
Appellant argues that the complaint for the arrest warrant was insufficient and that his motion to suppress evidence obtained at the time of the arrest and incident to it should have been granted. The petition to suppress evidence attacks the validity of the search warrants, but not the arrest warrant. Assuming all three warrants were under attack at the hearing on defendant's motion, we are of the opinion that the issues raised were properly decided by the court below. Adequate probable cause for the issuance of the warrants was shown since the detective based his request for warrants on "information received from persons of reliable and good reputation" and personal knowledge and belief that the offenses were being committed obtained by investigation and surveillance. When the complaints were sworn and when the arrest was made the facts and circumstances within the detective's knowledge and of which he had reasonably trustworthy information were sufficient to warrant a prudent man in believing the defendant had committed or was committing an offense: Brinegar v. United States, 338 U.S. 160, 69 S. Ct. 1302, 93 L. ed. 1879 (1949); Beck v. Ohio, 379 U.S. 89, 85 S. Ct. 223, 13 L. ed. 2d 142 (1964).
The complaints for search warrants for the premises and the person of Joseph Ametrane presented the issuing magistrate the grounds on which affiant, John MacCrory, formed his belief that illegal acts had been and were being committed by Ametrane at the designated premises: "Complaints ...