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COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA v. PATRICK RYAN AND MARIANNE CASANO (05/01/79)

decided: May 1, 1979.

COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA
v.
PATRICK RYAN AND MARIANNE CASANO, APPELLANTS. COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA V. LESLIE SHAHEEN, APPELLANT



No. 513 January Term, 1978, Appeal from the Order of the Superior Court at No. 1807 October Term, 1977, reversing the Order of the Court of Common Pleas, Criminal, of Monroe County, at No. 153 April Term, 1977; No. 163 March Term, 1978, Appeal from the Order of the Superior Court at No. 104 April Term, 1976, affirming the Judgment of Sentence of the Court of Common Pleas, Criminal Division, of Allegheny County, at No. CC 7501997 A

COUNSEL

William R. Lee, Scranton, for Patrick Ryan.

George W. Westervelt, Jr., Stroudsburg, for Marianne Casano.

Charles P. Eyer, Sp. Asst. Dist. Atty., James F. Marsh, Dist. Atty., Marc Wolfe, Stroudsburg, for appellee.

Bruce A. Carsia, Norma Chase, Pittsburgh, for Leslie Shaheen.

Robert E. Colville, Dist. Atty., Robert L. Eberhardt, Charles W. Johns, Kemal Alexander Mericli, Asst. Dist. Attys., Pittsburgh, for appellee.

Eagen, C. J., and O'Brien, Roberts, Nix, Manderino and Larsen, JJ.

Author: O'brien

[ 484 Pa. Page 604]

OPINION OF THE COURT

The instant appeals involve a single question of law which has never been addressed by this court: Can an issuing authority validly issue a search warrant for premises outside his or her magisterial district but within the same judicial district? We answer in the affirmative.

Appellants at No. 513 January Term, 1978, Patrick Ryan and Marianne Casano, were charged with violating the Controlled Substance, Drug, Device and Cosmetic Act.*fn1 Appellant at No. 153 March Term, 1978, Leslie Shaheen, was charged with operating a lottery. In both cases, evidence was seized pursuant to search warrants issued by district justices, authorizing a search of premises outside the magisterial districts to which the issuing district justices had been duly elected.

[ 484 Pa. Page 605]

In both cases, motions to suppress, raising the issue presented in these cases, were filed. The suppression court in Monroe County ordered the evidence suppressed in the prosecutions of Ryan and Casano. Superior Court reversed, Commonwealth v. Ryan, 257 Pa. Super. 538, 391 A.2d 612 (1978), and we granted the petitions for allowance of appeal filed by Ryan and Casano.

In the case of appellant Shaheen, the suppression court denied the suppression motion. In a non-jury trial, appellant was found guilty of operating a lottery. Post-verdict motions were denied and appellant was ordered to pay a $1,000 fine and was sentenced to a six-month prison term in the Allegheny County Jail. The Superior affirmed, Commonwealth v. Shaheen, 257 Pa. Super. 393, 390 A.2d 1294 (1978), and we granted Shaheen's petition for allowance of appeal.

Pa.R.Crim.P. 2001 provides:

"A search warrant may be issued by an issuing authority*fn2 having jurisdiction of the person ...


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