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COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA v. CRAIG BAILEY (03/18/75)

decided: March 18, 1975.

COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA
v.
CRAIG BAILEY, APPELLANT



COUNSEL

Robert B. Mozenter, Philadelphia, for appellant.

F. Emmett Fitzpatrick, Jr., Dist. Atty., Richard A. Sprague, 1st Asst. Dist. Atty., Steven H. Goldblatt, Asst. Dist. Atty., Chief, Appeals Division, B. Leadbetter, Philadelphia, for appellee.

Jones, C. J., and Eagen, O'Brien, Roberts, Pomeroy, Nix and Manderino, JJ. Nix, J., did not participate in the consideration or decision of this case. Roberts, J., filed a concurring opinion. Pomeroy, J., filed a concurring opinion. Jones, C. J., concurred in the result.

Author: Manderino

[ 460 Pa. Page 501]

OPINION

Prior to trial on a murder indictment the appellant, Craig Bailey, filed an application to suppress evidence which was alleged to be the product of an illegal police detention. The application was denied and the evidence consisting of oral inculpatory statements made by the appellant to the police was introduced by the prosecution during the appellant's trial by jury which resulted in a verdict of murder in the first degree. Post-trial motions were denied and the appellant received a sentence of life imprisonment. This appeal followed.

On January 16, 1970, two men committed a robbery at John Wallace's Food Market in Philadelphia. John Wallace,

[ 460 Pa. Page 502]

    who was shot during the robbery, died on January 23, 1970. On that date, officers from the homicide division of the police department began an investigation during which information was received from an informer, whose identity was never revealed by the officers, that the appellant, with a .22 revolver in his possession, had been seen in the neighborhood on the evening of the robbery. Later, the officers learned that the appellant was in jail awaiting disposition of charges, which were not related to the food market robbery. Those charges were all terminated in appellant's favor. One of the pending charges was dismissed on February 11, 1970, and on February 20, 1970, the appellant was found not guilty on the other pending charge.

Following the not guilty verdict on February 20, there were no charges pending against the appellant and he was entitled to leave the courtroom free of any restraint by law enforcement officials. The prosecution disputed this fact in its brief submitted to this Court prior to oral argument. That brief contained an assertion that the appellant was "also in violation of parole," and thus his continued detention was proper even after he was found not guilty. Because close scrutiny of the almost 400 page record prior to oral argument, failed to reveal any basis for the prosecution's assertion, this Court, at oral argument, requested a supplemental brief concerning the prosecution's assertion of its original brief. The supplemental brief conceded that the assertion was "error" and there was no basis in the record for the assertion. There is thus no dispute that appellant's continued detention on February 20, 1970, after the not guilty verdict, was not based on any pending charges of any kind. Instead, it was based on an arrest, immediately after the not guilty verdict, by officers of the homicide division who had obtained a judicial order, called a prisoner's bring-up order, authorizing the taking of appellant to the Police Administration Building. Appellant was thus arrested at a

[ 460 Pa. Page 503]

    time when he was not being lawfully detained for any reason.

The appellant, after his arrest, was brought to the Police Administration Building at 2:00 p. m., the afternoon of February 20, 1970. He was given Miranda warnings about one hour after his arrival. Four separate interrogation sessions followed during which the appellant was handcuffed to a chair. The last such session ended at 12:30 a. m., the following day, ten and one-half hours after the appellant's arrival. During each of the four interrogation sessions, inculpatory statements made by the ...


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