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COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA v. BESSIE GRACE LANGLEY (10/08/76)

SUPREME COURT OF PENNSYLVANIA


decided: October 8, 1976.

COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA
v.
BESSIE GRACE LANGLEY, APPELLANT

COUNSEL

William C. Crosswell, Roda, Morgan, Hallgren & Heinly, Lancaster, for appellant.

B. Richard Eckman, Dist. Atty., Charles A. Achey, Jr., Asst. Dist. Atty., Lancaster, for appellee.

Jones, C. J., and Eagen, O'Brien, Pomeroy, Nix and Manderino, JJ. Roberts, J., took no part in the consideration or decision of this case. Manderino, J., filed a dissenting opinion.

Author: Per Curiam

[ 468 Pa. Page 393]

OPINION OF THE COURT

Judgment of sentence affirmed.

MANDERINO, Justice (dissenting).

I dissent. The majority approves the ruling of the trial court which withheld from the jury evidence it should have been allowed to consider when determining the state of appellant's mind at the time of the shooting. Appellant sought to have a psychiatrist express an opinion as to appellant's state of mind at the time of the shooting. This opinion was based on the psychiatrist's observations of appellant's behavior while under an hypnotic trance induced by the psychiatrist. Once the witness was properly qualified to testify as to the experiment done on appellant, the evidence should have been put before

[ 468 Pa. Page 394]

    the jury so that they, in their collective wisdom, could determine whether or not appellant's action while in a hypnotic trance indicated that she did not possess the requisite intent to commit murder at the time she shot Robert Ham.

19761008

© 1998 VersusLaw Inc.



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