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UNITED STATES v. CRANDALL

July 13, 1973

UNITED STATES of America
v.
Donald CRANDALL


Snyder, District Judge.


The opinion of the court was delivered by: SNYDER

Defendant was tried before this court without a jury on the last count of an original eight count indictment charging that Donald Crandall, while under oath as a witness in a proceeding before a grand jury in the Western District of Pennsylvania, on February 7, 1972, knowingly did make a false material declaration under the following circumstances. At the time, the grand jury was conducting an investigation to determine whether there were any violations of the federal conspiracy and mail fraud statutes, and it was material to the aforesaid investigation to determine the identity of any person responsible for, or connected with, an insurance claim arising out of the burglary of the Auto Spa on September 13, 1970; and it was material to the investigation to determine whether or not any person had offered or paid money to Donald Crandall for the purpose of obtaining an alteration in a police report which was subsequently used as the basis for an insurance claim.

 It was stipulated that the following questions were asked and answered as indicated:

 
"Question. Did Colaizzi have anything to do with this insurance claim, to the best of your knowledge?
 
"Answer. No, I don't think so. I mean it wasn't his place of business, I didn't think he did, but I don't know if he did or not."

 And later during the same grand jury session:

 
"Question. Did Colaizzi ever contact anybody in your police station, or on your police force, concerning this burglary?
 
"Answer. No -- what burglary are you referring to?
 
"Question. The burglary at the Auto Spa on the 13th of September.
 
"Answer. Oh, no. We have lots of burglaries. That is why I asked.
 
"Question. Is there anything else you can add to help us find out what old Rick had in mind here?
 
"Answer. No, nothing at the present time. Well I would like to make it clear, the reason I know this Colaizzi, is, he bought my home off me. I had a home for sale back in 1969, and he bought my home. This is how come I met him. This was about the same time he went into business in our township; this is how I come to know him.
 
"Question. But he didn't contact you concerning this burglary at the Auto Spa?
 
"Answer. Not that I know of."

 It was then further alleged that Donald Crandall, despite the answers given above, well knew that Charles Colaizzi did contact Donald Crandall concerning the burglary at the Auto Spa. These allegedly false answers were then claimed to be a violation of 18 U.S.C. Section 1623. *fn1"

 FINDINGS OF FACT

 1. The federal grand jury was reconvened on February 7, 1972 in the Western District of Pennsylvania.

 2. The defendant, Donald Crandall, was duly subpoenaed to appear at the grand jury and was asked and answered the questions as hereinabove set forth and incorporated ...


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