No. 1717 October Term 1978, Appeal from the Judgment of Sentence of the Court of Common Pleas of Montgomery County, Criminal Division, No. 670-77.
Ronald F. O'Driscoll, Assistant Public Defender, Lansdale, for appellant.
James A. Cunningham, Assistant District Attorney, Pottstown, for Commonwealth, appellee.
Price, Spaeth and Lipez, JJ.
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Appellant was convicted in a jury trial of criminal conspiracy, 18 Pa.C.S. § 903, theft by unlawful taking of movable property 18 Pa.C.S. § 3921(a), theft by receiving stolen goods, 18 Pa.C.S. § 3925, and retail theft, 18 Pa.C.S. § 3929. Post-verdict motions were filed and denied. Concurrent sentences of three to six years for theft of movable property and two-and-a-half to five years for retail theft were imposed. The sentence for criminal conspiracy was three to six years, to run consecutive to the other two sentences.*fn1
Appellant's first contention is that the evidence was insufficient to support the verdicts. Extensive testimony from two Commonwealth witnesses established that on the afternoon of September 4, 1976 appellant and a companion entered the Bailey, Banks & Biddle store in Bala Cynwyd,
[ 281 Pa. Super. Page 510]
Montgomery County. Appellant looked at several valuable diamond rings for sale, and said that he would be back with a $500 check in order to make a deposit on one. A few hours later, appellant returned with his companion and asked to see a diamond ring which sold for about $12,000. While appellant was holding the ring and examining it, the companion slowly walked to the front door of the store and opened it. Carrying the ring, appellant then suddenly bolted for the door, and both he and his companion fled. The thorough identification testimony from the eyewitnesses was corroborated by expert testimony concerning the handprints appellant had left on the store counter, which had been wiped clean shortly before he and his companion arrived the second time. Viewed in the light most favorable to the Commonwealth as verdict winner, the evidence was clearly sufficient for the jury to infer guilt beyond a reasonable doubt for criminal conspiracy, theft by unlawful taking, and retail theft.*fn2
Appellant also claims he is entitled to discharge because the court below erred in denying his motion to dismiss all charges under Pennsylvania Rule of Criminal Procedure 1100, for failure to commence trial within 180 days of the filing of the complaint. The complaint was filed on September 10, 1976. Trial commenced 279 days later on June 17, 1977. However, Rule 1100(d) provides in pertinent part:
"In determining the period for commencement of trial, there shall be excluded therefrom such period of delay at any stage ...