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COMMONWEALTH v. MARTIN (06/13/68)

decided: June 13, 1968.

COMMONWEALTH
v.
MARTIN, APPELLANT



Appeal from order of Court of Quarter Sessions of Erie County, No. 500 of 1967, in case of Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. James Martin.

COUNSEL

Vedder J. White, for appellant.

Robert B. McCullough, Assistant District Attorney, with him William E. Pfadt, District Attorney, for Commonwealth, appellee.

Wright, P. J., Watkins, Montgomery, Jacobs, Hoffman, Spaulding, and Hannum, JJ. Dissenting Opinion by Hoffman, J. Spaulding, J., joins in this dissenting opinion.

Author: Per Curiam

[ 212 Pa. Super. Page 224]

Order affirmed.

Disposition

Order affirmed.

Dissenting Opinion by Hoffman, J.:

I would reverse the judgment of sentence and grant a new trial, because the trial judge failed to notify defense counsel of an attempt to influence a juror. Appellant in this case was convicted of assault with intent to kill.

[ 212 Pa. Super. Page 225]

Two opinions were filed by the lower court in this case. Reference to both is necessary for a full understanding of the facts.

The court stated, in its first opinion: "On the night of May 15, 1967, at a time when the trial was only partially completed a member of the jury was contacted at her home by an anonymous caller who threatened her in the event of a verdict adverse to the defendant. The juror did not report the incident to the court, when it convened the following morning, May 16th. However, it is our understanding that she did communicate the threat to other members of the jury during their deliberations in the jury room. They then returned a guilty verdict that afternoon. After the verdict was returned, and the jury dismissed, the juror in question, along with other members ...


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