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COMMONWEALTH v. MOTT (03/31/75)

decided: March 31, 1975.

COMMONWEALTH
v.
MOTT, APPELLANT



Appeal from judgment of sentence of Court of Common Pleas of Beaver County, No. 592 of 1973, in case of Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. Louis F. Mott, Jr.

COUNSEL

John J. Ross, Public Defender, for appellant.

Joseph M. Stanichak, Assistant District Attorney, with him Joseph S. Walko, District Attorney, for Commonwealth, appellee.

Watkins, P. J., Hoffman, Cercone, Price, Van der Voort, and Spaeth, JJ. (Jacobs, J., absent). Opinion by Van der Voort, J., in Support of Affirmance. Watkins, P.j., and Price, J., join in this opinion. Opinion by Cercone, J., In Support of Reversal. Hoffman and Spaeth, JJ., join in this opinion.

Author: Per Curiam

[ 234 Pa. Super. Page 53]

The six Judges who heard this appeal being equally divided the judgment of sentence is affirmed.

Disposition

Judgment of sentence affirmed.

Opinion by Van der Voort, J., in Support of Affirmance:

Appeal is taken to this Court from conviction by jury and sentence by the trial court on charges of criminal conspiracy, criminal solicitation and bribery in official matters, these offenses being violations of the Crimes Code, sections 903, 902 and 4701, respectively. The conspiracy, solicitation and bribery related to a charge of conducting a lottery. Appellant's motions in arrest of judgment and for new trial were denied. We affirm by a divided Court.

[ 234 Pa. Super. Page 54]

The appellant claims that the trial judge should have charged the jury on entrapment. The law of entrapment in Pennsylvania is now codified as a part of the Crimes Code,*fn1 and reads as follows:

"ยง 313. Entrapment

(a) General rule. -- A public law enforcement official or a person acting in cooperation with such an official perpetrates an entrapment if for the purpose of obtaining evidence of the commission of an offense, he induces or encourages another person to engage in conduct constituting such offense by either:

(1) making knowingly false representations designed to induce the belief that such conduct is not prohibited; or

(2) employing methods of persuasion or inducement which create a substantial risk that such an offense will be committed by persons other than those who are ready to commit it.

(b) Burden of proof. -- Except as provided in subsection (c) of this section, a person prosecuted for an offense shall be acquitted if he proves by a preponderance of evidence that his conduct occurred in response to an entrapment."

The case law of entrapment is discussed at length in Sherman v. U.S., 356 U.S. 369, 372, 78 S. Ct. 819, 821, 2 L.Ed. 2d 848 (1958). In Sherman, ...


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