Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Delaware County in case of Ronald Goldsborough, Dennis Richardson, Ronald Wesley and Negh D. Coffee v. Ernest Burk, District Judge, Irvin Lawrence, District Judge, Nicholas Molla, District Judge, James B. Taylor, Alderman, Garland W. Anderson, Alderman, Edward J. Gill, Alderman, Thomas H. Worrilow, Alderman, William Ogden, Alderman, and Thomas J. Conley, Alderman, No. 10535 of 1970.
Jack Brian, with him Richard, Brian, DiSanti & Hamilton, for appellants.
Joseph E. Pappano, with him Pappano & Pappano, for appellees.
Judges Crumlish, Jr., Kramer and Rogers, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Kramer.
This is an appeal from an opinion and final order of the Court of Common Pleas of Delaware County (1)
dissolving a preliminary injunction, (2) sustaining defendants' preliminary objections, and (3) dismissing the plaintiffs' complaint.
Suit was instituted by the filing of a Complaint in Equity by four individuals on behalf of themselves and all other residents of the City of Chester, as a class, against the ten named District Judges and Aldermen who exercise jurisdiction over criminal cases in Delaware County. It is important to note that every paragraph in the Complaint refers to the criminal procedure or criminal laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. The Complaint alleges violations by the minor judiciary of certain criminal procedural rules relating to arraignment, public hearing, the setting of bail, and the maintenance of criminal docket records. The Complaint generally seeks (1) to enjoin the defendant members of the minor judiciary from conducting preliminary arraignments in private places, (2) to enjoin them from arbitrarily setting bond without reference to the pertinent criteria as set forth in the Pennsylvania Rules of Criminal Procedure, and (3) to require the defendants to hold arraignments during regularly established hours.
After hearing, the lower court on October 15, 1970 granted a preliminary injunction. Thereafter the defendants filed (1) preliminary objections, (2) exceptions to the preliminary injunction, and (3) a motion to dissolve the preliminary injunction. After consolidating all of these matters for argument the lower court ruled in favor of the defendants on all three matters. On April 23, 1971, appeal was taken by the plaintiffs to this Court.
It is extremely important to note at this point that on April 7, 1971 the plaintiffs petitioned the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania (No. 43 Miscellaneous Docket, 1971) to take extraordinary jurisdiction of this matter
under Section 205 of the Appellate Court Jurisdiction Act, Act 1970, July 31, P.L. 673, Article II, Section 205, 17 P.S. § 211.205. This petition to the Supreme ...