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COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA v. THOMAS FRANCIS WAGNER (12/07/79)

filed: December 7, 1979.

COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA
v.
THOMAS FRANCIS WAGNER, APPELLANT



Nos. 2878 and 2879 October Term, 1978, Appeal from Judgment of Sentence of the Court of Common Pleas of Montgomery County, Criminal Division, at Nos. 1277 of 1978 and 1349 of 1978.

COUNSEL

Edwin L. Guyer, Blue Bell, for appellant.

John T. Salvucci, Norristown, for Commonwealth, appellee.

Cercone, President Judge, and Watkins and Hoffman, JJ.

Author: Hoffman

[ 272 Pa. Super. Page 458]

Appellant contends that the charges against him should be dismissed because the Commonwealth did not comply with Pa.R.Crim.P. 51 and 62. We disagree and, accordingly, affirm.

[ 272 Pa. Super. Page 459]

On December 3, 1977, police arrested appellant for recklessly endangering another person, 18 Pa.C.S.A. § 2705, after a 10 mile chase on the highway. They brought appellant to the police station but, after deciding to drop the charge of recklessly endangering in favor of issuing a citation for violations of the Motor Vehicle Code, 75 Pa.C.S.A. § 101 et seq., released him from custody after about 2 hours. During that time, the officers did not question appellant and he did not make any statements. The investigating officer subsequently traced the route appellant had followed during the chase, prepared a report and, on December 5, 1977, filed with an issuing authority a citation charging appellant with violation of 12 provisions of the Motor Vehicle Code. At hearings held March 20, 1978, and April 5, 1978, appellant was found guilty of all violations charged.

Pa.R.Crim.P. 51 provides:

Rule 51. Means of Instituting Proceedings in Summary Cases

A. Criminal proceedings in summary cases shall be instituted in the following manner:

(1) Traffic Offenses (Other than Parking)

(a) Except as provided by subparagraphs A(1)(b) and (c), a citation shall be issued to the defendant by a police officer, who shall be in uniform, when the offense charged is a violation of a traffic ordinance or ...


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