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COMMONWEALTH v. HOLMES (04/22/75)

decided: April 22, 1975.

COMMONWEALTH
v.
HOLMES, APPELLANT



Appeal from order of Court of Common Pleas of Dauphin County, Nos. 281, 283, 451, 821, and 822 of 1973, in case of Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. Grelan Lamar Holmes.

COUNSEL

Richard D. Walker, Public Defender, for appellant.

Marion E. MacIntyre, Deputy District Attorney, and LeRoy S. Zimmerman, District Attorney, for Commonwealth, appellee.

Watkins, P. J., Jacobs, Hoffman, Cercone, Price, Van der Voort, and Spaeth, JJ. Opinion by Jacobs, J.

Author: Jacobs

[ 234 Pa. Super. Page 143]

This is an appeal from an order denying, without a hearing, relief requested in a Post Conviction Hearing Act petition.

In the spring of 1973 the appellant was arrested in connection with two armed robberies of retail stores in the Harrisburg area in which store proprietors were shot. He was subsequently indicted on two counts of aggravated robbery, two of assault with intent to murder and one firearms violation. In April of 1973 the appellant, through counsel, negotiated a plea bargain with the district attorney's office. Under the terms of the agreement the district attorney agreed to accept guilty pleas on all five charges and to recommend a total sentence of 10 to 20 years imprisonment in exchange for the appellant's testimony against three co-defendants arrested in connection with the same two robberies and shootings.

On April 9, 1973, pursuant to the agreement and subsequent to a colloquy to which no objections were then or are now raised, the appellant entered pleas of guilty which were accepted by the court. The court informed the defendant that it would not be bound by the terms of the plea bargain, but that if it found after a review of the evidence that it could not accept the bargain, the appellant would be permitted to withdraw his pleas. After hearing the Commonwealth's evidence the court stated:

"I am willing to accept the plea bargain solely on the basis that you complete your part of that bargain by testifying in all of the cases involving these two robberies . . . . I will not consider myself bound by the plea bargain if you do not testify as you have indicated. Do you understand that?

THE DEFENDANT: Yes.

THE COURT: All right."

The court then sentenced the appellant to a term of 10 to 20 years on charges arising from one of the robberies and deferred ...


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