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COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA v. WESLEY EADDY (04/28/77)

decided: April 28, 1977.

COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA
v.
WESLEY EADDY, APPELLANT



COUNSEL

Faust Mattioni, Jack J. Levine, Alan J. Davis, Philadelphia, for appellant.

F. Emmett Fitzpatrick, Dist. Atty., Steven H. Goldblatt, Asst. Dist. Atty., Chief, Appeals Div., Neil B. Kitrosser, Philadelphia, for appellee.

Jones, C. J., and Eagen, O'Brien, Roberts, Pomeroy, Nix and Manderino, JJ. Jones, former C. J., took no part in the decision of this case. Eagen, C. J., dissents.

Author: Manderino

[ 472 Pa. Page 411]

OPINION OF THE COURT

Appellant, Wesley Eaddy, was arrested on July 29, 1972 and charged with the fatal shooting of Samuel Goggins. Pretrial motions were denied, appellant was tried before a judge and a jury, found guilty of murder in the first degree, and sentenced to life imprisonment. Post-verdict motions were denied, and this appeal followed.

Appellant raises several issues on this appeal in support of his contention that a new trial should be granted. We conclude that certain statements elicited from appellant by the police subsequent to his arrest, were taken in violation of Pa.Rules of Criminal Procedure, Rule 130, and Commonwealth v. Futch, 447 Pa. 389, 290 A.2d 417 (1972), and therefore, should have been suppressed prior to trial. We, therefore, need not now address the other issues raised.

The facts surrounding the question at issue are as follows: Appellant was arrested at approximately 7:00 p. m., on July 19, 1972, in connection with the "gang shooting" of Samuel Goggins. Appellant arrived at the 20th and Pennsylvania Avenue Police Precinct Building at approximately 7:20 p. m. Upon learning that the victim had died as a result of the shooting, police transported the appellant to the Homicide Division at the Police Administration Building, where they arrived at approximately 8:40 p. m. During this time appellant was not questioned by the police. At 9:00 p. m. appellant was told that he was being questioned about the homicide of Samuel Goggins, and was read Miranda warnings from a standard police interrogation card. Appellant was then interrogated from 9:25 p. m. until 10:30 p. m., during which time he denied any knowledge of or participation in the homicide. Appellant was then left alone from 10:30 p. m. until 12:05 a. m., July 20, 1972, at which time

[ 472 Pa. Page 412]

    he was taken to the polygraph room. A polygraph examination was conducted, during which appellant was interrogated from 12:05 a. m. until 3:05 a. m., July 20, 1972. At 3:05 a. m. appellant orally admitted his involvement in the homicide.

Appellant's oral admission came in response to information supplied by police to him that he had "failed" the polygraph examination. Questioning continued until 3:30 a. m. when appellant was fed and taken to the men's room. From 4:05 a. m. until 4:50 a. m., appellant was left alone. From 4:50 a. m. until 5:00 a. m. a "verification polygraph examination" was given. Appellant was again left alone from 5:00 a. m. until 7:00 a. m. At 7:00 a. m. Miranda warnings were repeated, after which a formal written statement was typed, read, and signed by appellant. The taking of the formal statement concluded at 8:15 a. m., July 20, 1972. Appellant was arraigned at approximately 3:00 p. m., July 20, 1972.

We have repeatedly held that "pre-arraignment delay [is] unnecessary unless required to administratively process an accused." See Commonwealth v. Williams, 455 Pa. 569, 573, 319 A.2d 419, 421 (1974) and cases cited therein. Furthermore,

"Rule 118 of the Pennsylvania Rules of Criminal Procedure [now Rule 130], and our decision in Futch, supra, are specifically designed to put a stop to the practice of arresting an individual and holding him during a lengthy period while continuing the investigation before arraigning him." Commonwealth v. Cherry, 457 Pa. 201, 205, ...


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