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COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA v. ALAN A. BROWN (08/17/84)

submitted: August 17, 1984.

COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA
v.
ALAN A. BROWN, APPELLANT



No. 00205 Philadelphia, 1984, Appeal from the Order of January 17, 1984 in the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County, Criminal Division, No. 20-22 July 1980

COUNSEL

Irene H. Cotton, Philadelphia, for appellant.

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

Wickersham, Brosky and Tamilia, JJ.

Author: Tamilia

[ 336 Pa. Super. Page 631]

Appellant was arrested on June 23, 1980 and subsequently charged with attempted burglary, criminal conspiracy, possessing an instrument of crime and prohibited offensive weapons. On November 20 and 24, 1980, appellant, represented by a public defender, was tried along with co-defendant, Theodore Skalski, before the Honorable Judith J. Jamison, sitting without a jury. On November 24, 1980, appellant was found guilty of attempted burglary,*fn1 criminal conspiracy*fn2 and possessing a prohibited offensive weapon*fn3 for his participation in a scheme to burglarize a house. No post-verdict motions were filed and on April 2, 1981, Judge Jamison imposed concurrent sentences of eighteen months to ten years for the attempted burglary conviction and eighteen months to five years for the conspiracy conviction. Sentence was suspended on the remaining conviction of possessing a prohibited offensive weapon. Appellant thereafter filed a pro se petition for reconsideration of sentence which was denied.

While represented by new counsel, appellant filed an appeal from the judgment of sentence. However, on May 26, 1982, this Court remanded the matter to the lower court without prejudice to appellant's right to raise issues in appropriate post-conviction proceedings. On August 12, 1982, appellant filed a petition under the Post-Conviction Hearing Act (hereinafter PCHA)*fn4 and subsequently, on January 6, 1983, a hearing was held before the Honorable Edward J. Blake. On January 17, 1984, the PCHA court denied appellant's petition and the instant appeal followed.

[ 336 Pa. Super. Page 632]

Appellant first argues that he was denied a fair trial when, during the jury trial waiver colloquy, the trial judge asked appellant if he was a drug addict. In the course of the colloquy, the trial judge asked the appellant:

Q. Are you addicted to drugs or alcohol?

A. Not right now I am not. I had a drug problem at one time.

Q. Have you had any drugs or alcohol or any intoxicants within the ...


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