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DENNIS GRADY v. GLEN R. JEFFES (WARDEN) (03/28/79)

decided: March 28, 1979.

DENNIS GRADY, PETITIONER
v.
GLEN R. JEFFES (WARDEN), STATE CORRECTIONAL INSTITUTION, DALLAS, PENNSYLVANIA, AND PENNSYLVANIA BOARD OF PROBATION AND PAROLE, RESPONDENTS



Original jurisdiction in case of Dennis Grady v. Glen R. Jeffes (Warden), State Correctional Institution, Dallas, Pennsylvania, and Pennsylvania Board of Probation and Parole.

COUNSEL

Dennis Grady, petitioner, for himself.

Robert A. Greevy, Assistant Attorney General, and Edward G. Biester, Jr., Acting Attorney General, for respondent.

President Judge Bowman and Judges Crumlish, Jr., Wilkinson, Jr., Mencer, Rogers, Blatt, DiSalle, Craig and MacPhail. Opinion by Judge DiSalle.

Author: Disalle

[ 41 Pa. Commw. Page 413]

Dennis Grady has filed a pleading which we have chosen to treat as a petition for review in the nature of a complaint in mandamus directed against the Pennsylvania Board of Probation and Parole (Board). We are presently called upon to rule on the parties' respective motions for summary judgment.

An examination of the pleadings and the Board's supporting affidavit pertinently reveals that on August 12, 1976, Petitioner, a parolee, was arrested on a number of criminal charges. In response to this, the Board lodged a parole violation warrant against him on August 16. On September 3, Petitioner was afforded a preliminary/detention hearing, after which the Board ordered him detained pending disposition of criminal charges and returned as a technical parole violator available. Thereafter, Petitioner appeared in three county courts of common pleas where he was convicted of a multiplicity of crimes and sentenced to various terms of imprisonment, the final sentencing occurring on January 13, 1977. On January 18, Petitioner requested a full board hearing which was conducted on March 4.

On March 14, 1977, the Board took action to recommit Petitioner as a convicted parole violator when available. Although notice of this decision was forwarded on March 17 to Petitioner at the Philadelphia General Hospital, it appears that Petitioner had, in fact, escaped from this institution on March 14. On June 10, 1977, Petitioner was incarcerated in the Philadelphia County Prison on the charge of escape. Although initially found guilty of this charge on July 28, his conviction was ultimately reversed on October 19, 1977. On October 21, Petitioner was received at Graterford State Correctional Institution. On November 27, 1977, the Board affirmed its March 14, 1977 decision

[ 41 Pa. Commw. Page 414]

    that Petitioner be recommitted as a convicted parole violator.

Ready disposition of this case is precluded by the rather confused state of Petitioner's pleadings and our concomitant inclination to construe his arguments liberally so as to avoid injustice to him. The result of this is, of course, that the Board's pleadings and supporting affidavit have proven, somewhat understandably, to be inadequate. The Board will be directed, therefore, to file supplemental affidavits so as to clarify the pleadings.

As we perceive it, the Petitioner has raised two issues in his petition for review: (1) whether he was afforded a timely preliminary/detention hearing with regard to his parole status; and (2) whether he and his attorney received notice of the Board's March 14, 1977 decision.*fn1

With regard to the first issue, it is clear from the pleadings that Petitioner was accorded a preliminary/detention hearing on September 3, 1976, approximately 15 days after a parole violation warrant was lodged against him charging him with technical parole violations. Looking to the regulations then in effect, it is apparent that Petitioner was entitled to receive a preliminary hearing within 10 days of the lodging of the parole violation warrant. See 37 Pa. Code ยงยง 71.3(1) and (3). While the pleadings appear facially complete in this regard, further inquiry reveals that a criminal preliminary hearing may have been conducted on August 25, 1976 (9 days after the Board lodged its ...


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