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HELEN WILLING v. CARL M. MAZZOCONE AND CHARLES F. QUINN (10/05/78)

decided: October 5, 1978.

HELEN WILLING, APPELLANT,
v.
CARL M. MAZZOCONE AND CHARLES F. QUINN, INDIVIDUALLY AND T/A MAZZOCONE & QUINN, P. C. AND MAZZOCONE & QUINN, P. C., APPELLEES



No. 320 January Term, 1977, Appeal from the Order of the Superior Court, October Term, 1976, Number 475, affirming as modified the Decree of the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County, Civil Action, Equity, September Term, 1975, No. 4353

COUNSEL

Community Legal Services, Inc., Henry J. Sommer, Douglas G. Dye, Elliot B. Platt, Philadelphia, for appellant.

Harold B. Marcus, Philadelphia, for appellees.

Eagen, C. J., and O'Brien, Roberts, Pomeroy, Nix, Manderino and Larsen, JJ. Pomeroy, J., filed a concurring opinion. Roberts, J., filed a concurring opinion in which O'Brien, J., joined. Eagen, C. J., filed a dissenting opinion. Nix and Larsen, JJ., dissent.

Author: Manderino

[ 482 Pa. Page 378]

OPINION

On Monday, September 29, and Wednesday, October 1, 1975, appellant, Helen Willing, demonstrated in the pedestrian

[ 482 Pa. Page 379]

    plaza between building number two and building number three, Penn Center Plaza, downtown Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The plaza is bounded by 15th and 16th Streets, Market Street, and John F. Kennedy Boulevard, and is a well traveled pedestrian pathway between the two court buildings located at City Hall and at Five Penn Center Plaza. While engaged in this activity, which lasted for several hours each day, appellant wore a "sandwich-board" sign around her neck. On the sign she had hand lettered the following:

LAW -- FIRM

     of

QUINN -- MAZZOCONE

Stole money from me -- and

Sold-me-out-to-the

INSURANCE COMPANY

As she marched back and forth, appellant also pushed a shopping cart on which she had placed an American flag. She continuously rang a cow bell and blew on a whistle to further attract attention.

Appellees in this case are two members of the legal profession, Carl M. Mazzocone and Charles F. Quinn, who are associated in the two member law firm of Mazzocone and Quinn, p. c. When appellant refused appellees' efforts to amicably dissuade her from further activity such as that described above, appellees filed a suit in equity in the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County seeking to enjoin her from further demonstration. Three hearings were held, at which the following factual history emerged.

In 1968, appellees, who have specialized in the trial of workmen's compensation matters for several years, represented appellant in such a case. Pursuant to appellees' representation, appellant was awarded permanent/partial disability benefits which she collected for a number of years. At the time of the initial settlement distribution with appellant, appellees deducted the sum of $150.00 as costs of the case. This sum, according to appellees' evidence, was paid in

[ 482 Pa. Page 380]

    full to Robert DeSilverio, M.D., a treating psychiatrist who testified on appellant's behalf in the Workmen's Compensation matter. Appellees presented copies of their records covering the transaction with Dr. DeSilverio. A cancelled check for the amount of the payment, and the testimony of Dr. DeSilverio himself, confirmed appellees' account of the transaction. Appellant offered no evidence other than her testimony that the cause of her antagonism towards appellees was not any dissatisfaction with the settlement, but rather, ...


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