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WILLIAM SHERIDAN v. COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA (03/14/83)

decided: March 14, 1983.

WILLIAM SHERIDAN, PETITIONER
v.
COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION BOARD OF REVIEW, RESPONDENT. HYGRADE FOOD PRODUCTS CORPORATION, INTERVENOR. KENNETH FEDOR, PETITIONER V. COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION BOARD OF REVIEW, RESPONDENT. HYGRADE FOOD PRODUCTS CORPORATION, INTERVENOR



Appeals from the Orders of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review in cases of In Re: Claim of William Warren Sheridan, No. B-200185; and In Re: Claim of Kenneth Fedor, No. B-81-1-D-33.

COUNSEL

Milton S. Lazaroff, with him Saul Doner, Lobel, Doner & Lazaroff, for petitioner.

Andrew S. Price, for intervenor.

No appearance for respondent.

Judges Rogers, Blatt and MacPhail, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Rogers.

Author: Rogers

[ 72 Pa. Commw. Page 569]

The claimants in these consolidated unemployment compensation cases were discharged from their employment with the Hygrade Food Products Corporation for violating a company rule against theft.

The Office of Employment Security, a referee, and the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review all decided that the claimants were ineligible on

[ 72 Pa. Commw. Page 570]

    account of their willful misconduct. Section 402(e) of the Unemployment Compensation Law, 43 P.S. ยง 802(e). The claimants have petitioned for review of the Board's decision. We have carefully examined the record and the briefs and we affirm the Board's order.

The claimants were employed in the shipping department of their employer's meat processing plant. The crucial evidence was supplied by the testimony of one Hammons, a driver for an independent trucking company who testified that, in pursuance of an agreement among them, the claimants loaded boxes of meat additional to the number required to be delivered to customers onto Hammons' truck and that the claimants were to be paid in cash or diet pills for this accommodation. Hammons' employer learned of this scheme when more than the proper number of cases of meat were found on Hammons' truck and alerted the claimants' employer. Hammons, now cooperating in the investigation, delivered $50 in marked bills to one of the claimants. The claimants were naturally discharged for these activities.

The claimants contend that their employer failed to carry its burden of proving their willful misconduct because some of the testimony at the referee's hearing was hearsay, to which their counsel made objection. Unfortunately for the claimants, the crucial evidence against them was not hearsay. Hammons testified at length and in detail; he identified the claimants and described the conspiracy. He related telephone calls from the claimants informing him of the ...


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