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COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA v. CHRISTOPHER DANIEL CONSTANTINE (06/22/84)

filed: June 22, 1984.

COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA
v.
CHRISTOPHER DANIEL CONSTANTINE, APPELLANT



No. 00867 Pittsburgh, 1981, Appeal from Judgment of Sentence of the Court of Common Pleas, Criminal Division, of Westmoreland County at No. 13 January Term 1980.

COUNSEL

Edward J. Bilik, Assistant Public Defender, Greensburg, for appellant.

William J. McCabe, Assistant District Attorney, Greensburg, for Commonwealth, appellee.

Spaeth, President Judge, and Cavanaugh, Brosky, Rowley, McEwen, Tamilia and Johnson, JJ.

Author: Cavanaugh

[ 329 Pa. Super. Page 214]

This is an appeal from judgment of sentence entered after a jury trial and verdict of guilty arising from a sale of cocaine*fn1 to an undercover state police trooper.

Initially, appellant raises several issues concerning the conduct of the trial. However, after a thorough review of the record, we find these to be without merit and adequately disposed of in the opinion of the lower court.

Appellant also challenges the validity of his sentence, claiming that he received an extended term of imprisonment based on the sentencing court's consideration of an impermissible factor; specifically, his refusal to cooperate by naming suppliers and customers in other drug transactions.*fn2 The facts relevant to this issue are as follows: At appellant's sentencing hearing it became clear that he had a long history of drug involvement, which included not only personal use but also large scale drug dealing. The sentencing court, especially concerned with appellant's drug dealing, pressed him to reveal his "sources." After reviewing the numerous drug sales detailed in appellant's criminal record, the sentencing court stated:

I want to know what the source of your drugs are. You have not told me a name or person or place. If you want to, you are perfectly welcome to do it now, because

[ 329 Pa. Super. Page 215]

    if I ever considered any reason for any mercy for you, Mr. Constantine, it would be any cooperation you would give these police or this Court, law enforcement agencies as to the source of these drugs, because as far as I am concerned these police and their cases against you, and your record that indicates that you are the source of the drugs, and that is the reason I am considering a very heavy sentence for you in this case. I want you to know it up front before I pronounce sentence. Do you have any help to give this Court, these officials what the source of the various drugs [is] . . . . You want to make a pitch for mercy to me, you got your chance right now.

N.T. 8/31/81 at 51-53.

After receiving vague and evasive answers from appellant, the ...


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