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EDWIN MARTIN WEAVER v. COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA (07/11/80)

decided: July 11, 1980.

EDWIN MARTIN WEAVER, APPELLANT
v.
COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION, BUREAU OF TRAFFIC SAFETY, APPELLEE



Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Lancaster County in case of Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. Edwin Martin Weaver, Trust Book No. 44, Page 350.

COUNSEL

Timothy J. Reese, with him Xakellis, Perezous & Mongiovi, for appellant.

Harold H. Cramer, Assistant Attorney General, with him Ward T. Williams, Chief Counsel, and Harvey Bartle, III, Acting Attorney General, for appellee.

Judges Mencer, Rogers and Craig, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Rogers.

Author: Rogers

[ 52 Pa. Commw. Page 627]

Edwin Martin Weaver has appealed from an order of the Court of Common Pleas of Lancaster County affirming the action of the Department of Transportation, Bureau of Traffic Safety suspending or revoking his operator's license for six years.

On October 29, 1977, Weaver was involved in an auto accident which resulted in his pleading guilty on March 27, 1978 to charges of violating three sections of the Vehicle Code, 75 Pa. C.S. § 101 et seq.: Section 3731, driving under the influence of alcohol or controlled substance; Section 3733, fleeing or attempting to elude a police officer; and Section 3743, leaving the scene of an accident involving damage to an attended vehicle or property.

On May 22, 1978, the Department notified Weaver of the imposition of a suspension of driving privileges for six months for his violation of Section 3731. Later the Department sent Weaver a notice dated June 13, 1978, imposing an additional six-month suspension for the violation of Section 3733 to commence upon the completion of his first suspension. Shortly after sending the second notice, the Department sent a third, dated June 22, 1978, stating that the two earlier noticed violations, in combination with the violation of Section 3743, brought Weaver within the classification of habitual offender of Section 1542, requiring revocation of his driving privileges for five years effective upon the completion of the second of the two consecutive six-month suspensions.

Weaver first says Section 1550 is unconstitutional because the court to which he appealed was limited by Subsection (c) "to determine whether the petitioner is in fact the person" whose license was suspended or revoked.

This argument was anticipated and disposed of in Department of Transportation v. Quinlan, 47 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 214,

[ 52 Pa. Commw. Page 628408]

A.2d 173 (1979), where Judge Craig wrote:

[T]he Statutory Construction Act of 1972, 1 Pa. C.S. § 1922(3) directs that the resolution of statutory ambiguities be consistent with Constitutional principles; the Pennsylvania Constitution, Article V, § 9 provides for a right of ...


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