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HUGH WILSON v. COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA (08/04/80)

decided: August 4, 1980.

HUGH WILSON, APPELLANT
v.
COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, APPELLEE



Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Montgomery County in case of Hugh W. Wilson v. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Department of Transportation, No. 77-05196.

COUNSEL

J. Scott Maxwell, with him Marc D. Jonas, Hamburg, Rubin, Mullin & Maxwell, for appellant.

Harold H. Cramer, Assistant Attorney General, with him Maurice Levin and Francis P. Bach, Assistant Attorneys General, Ward T. Williams, Chief Counsel, and Edward G. Biester, Jr., Attorney General, for appellee.

President Judge Crumlish, and Judges Blatt and Craig, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by President Judge Crumlish.

Author: Crumlish

[ 53 Pa. Commw. Page 343]

This is another appeal based on an erroneous test of the breathalyzer issue. The Montgomery County Common Pleas Court sustained the license suspension

[ 53 Pa. Commw. Page 344]

    of Hugh W. Wilson for six months under Section 624.1(a) of the Vehicle Code.*fn1 We affirm.

On November 18, 1976, Wilson was observed leaving a vehicle stopped on a private lawn in Whitpain Township. The administration of a field sobriety test was unsatisfactory and the arresting officer summoned the township's breathalyzer expert to the scene. Wilson was informed of his rights and advised that refusal to submit to the breathalyzer test would result in license suspension. Wilson wanted to speak with his attorney prior to submitting to the test. Affirming the license suspension, the Montgomery County Common Pleas Court found there were reasonable grounds for the breathalyzer test as well as a definite refusal to its administration.

We must determine whether the lower court erred*fn2 in finding that (1) the police officer had reasonable grounds to believe Wilson was driving a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol, and (2) Wilson's refusal of the chemical test warranted license suspension.

Our caselaw is clearly and finally dispositive of both issues. In McMahon v. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, 39 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 260, 263, 395 A.2d 318, 320 (1975), we enumerated the Commonwealth's burden:

For the proper suspension of an operator's license pursuant to Section ...


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