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COMMONWEALTH v. JACKSON (04/12/73)

decided: April 12, 1973.

COMMONWEALTH
v.
JACKSON, APPELLANT



Appeal from judgment of Court of Common Pleas of Mercer County, Sept. T., 1967, No. 31, in case of Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. Floyd Jackson.

COUNSEL

Michael J. Wherry, for appellant.

Robert F. Banks, Assistant District Attorney, with him Joseph J. Nelson, District Attorney, for Commonwealth, appellee.

Wright, P. J., Jacobs, Hoffman, Spaulding, Cercone, and Packel, JJ. (Watkins, J., absent.) Opinion by Hoffman, J.

Author: Hoffman

[ 224 Pa. Super. Page 281]

Appellant contends that the lower court erred in refusing his request for pretrial disclosure of the names of the Commonwealth witnesses who were to testify against him.

The appellant and four other men were charged with the May 26, 1967 armed robbery of a state liquor store located in Farrell, Mercer County. Prior to trial, the appellant pursuant to Rule 312(a)*fn1 presented the Commonwealth with a list of his alibi witnesses. Defense

[ 224 Pa. Super. Page 282]

    counsel then requested that the Court compel the Commonwealth to present the defense with a list of prosecution witnesses. The defense alleged that justice demanded such disclosure as it had to inform the prosecution of the names of its alibi witnesses.

The American Bar Association Project on Minimum Standards for Criminal Justice Standards Relating to Discovery and Procedure Before Trial impose the following duties upon the prosecution: "2.1 Prosecutor's obligations.

"(a) Except as is otherwise provided as to matters not subject to disclosure (section 2.6) and protective orders (section 4.4), the prosecuting attorney shall disclose to defense counsel the following material and information within his possession or control:

"(i) the names and addresses of persons whom the prosecuting attorney intends to call as witnesses at the hearing or trial, together with their relevant written or recorded statements;

"Not intended to be included within the classification designated ('persons whom the prosecuting attorney intends to call as witnesses at a hearing or trial') are rebuttal witnesses, i.e., those whom the prosecutor holds in readiness to rebut evidence which he anticipates the accused will present. However, the prosecuting attorney should not be tempted to use this mechanism to avoid disclosing a witness whose testimony ...


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