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COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA v. HIRAM DAVIS (05/20/83)

submitted: May 20, 1983.

COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA
v.
HIRAM DAVIS, APPELLANT



No. 1766 Philadelphia, 1981, Appeal from the Judgment of Sentence of the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County, Criminal Division, at Nos. 80-8-730-731

COUNSEL

Robert B. Mozenter, Philadelphia, for appellant.

Jane Cutler Greenspan, Assistant District Attorney, Philadelphia, for Commonwealth, appellee.

Hester, Brosky and Beck, JJ.

Author: Brosky

[ 318 Pa. Super. Page 509]

This is a direct appeal from judgment of sentence imposed subsequent to convictions for knowing and intentional possession and delivery of a controlled substance. Appellant raises two issues for our review. First, he argues that the evidence was insufficient. Second, he contends that he was denied his Sixth Amendment right to effective assistance of counsel due to the lack of a pre-trial motion for the discovery of the identity and testimony of an informant. We find no merit in either of these arguments and, accordingly, affirm.

Sufficiency of Evidence

The opinion of the trial court accurately summarizes the evidence in this case.

Paul S. James, narcotic agent for the Department of Justice, Bureau of Drug Control, testified that on March 10, 1980, he and his partner, Officer Steven Richardson met with an informant with the code name, "211-80" at Valley Forge, Pennsylvania. After the meeting, the informant made a telephone call in his presence. That as a result of that phone conversation they proceeded to South Philadelphia to the 2700 block of Federal Street with the informant, "211-80," in an unmarked car. That once at the 2700 block of Federal Street he parked his car and a green Camaro pulled directly behind him and parked. Agent James testified he informed the informant that he wanted to purchase five bundles of heroin. The informant spoke with the defendant Hiram Davis, known to him as "Pete," and he paid him One Hundred Eighty Dollars ($180.00) in unmarked bills to make the purchase. He stated that he did not mark the bills because the

[ 318 Pa. Super. Page 510]

    investigation was ongoing and they did not plan to make an arrest at that time. He then instructed "211-80" to purchase three bundles instead of five bundles of heroin. That after the informant handed the defendant the money he observed the defendant put something in his right hand. The informant returned with three bundles of suspected heroin. That the suspected heroin (three bundles consisting of twelve glassine packets) was turned over to Agent Richardson as evidence. On April 3, 1980, he again met the informant, "211-80," at Valley Forge, Pennsylvania and they drove to Philadelphia. He and the informant met with defendant Hiram Davis again to make a second purchase of heroin. That the informant purchased five bundles of heroin, but the five bundles contained only eighteen packets instead of twenty. That he observed the defendant's vehicle coming down the street and he proceeded to "flag him down." Agent James testified that he told the defendant he had only eighteen packets instead of twenty (20), and the defendant explained that the informant had "shortchanged" him. He testified that the defendant then stated, "from now on, you can deal directly with me." (N/T Vol. 1 p. 45). He then handed the agent a piece of paper with "Pete" and the telephone number "755-5622" on it. That after his discussion with the defendant, he and Agent Richardson met for a debriefing session. At that time he extracted three more packets from the informant and place [sic] them with the other evidence. These items were placed in an evidence envelope and given to agent Richardson. He testified that on May 22, 1980, at approximately 9:30 A.M. he placed a call to the phone number he received from the defendant. That as a result of the phone call he had a meeting with the defendant at 10:30 A.M. and purchased four bundles of heroin containing sixteen packets. That the bundles were given to agent Steven Richardson.

The Commonwealth's next witness was agent Steven Richardson who acted as a back-up for agent James. He testified that on the dates of March 10, April 3rd, and

[ 318 Pa. Super. Page 511]

May 22, 1980, he received the drug purchase from agent James. That the evidence was marked, placed on a property receipt and transported to the Philadelphia Crime Lab. That he placed the purchases in a small white envelope and placed it in a larger envelope with the time, date and amount of the purchase on it with his signature, and he identified the same in Court.

The Commonwealth's next witness was Chemist Michael Brister of the Philadelphia Police Department. After being qualified as an expert he testified that his duty is to perform analysis of alleged controlled substances. That on March 12, 1980, he picked six out of the twelve packets at random for his analysis of the March 10th, alleged drug transaction. That he found the six glazed packets contained heroin, quinine and nonreducing sugar, with a white ...


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