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COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA v. JOHN R. COLVIN (02/22/85)

filed: February 22, 1985.

COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA
v.
JOHN R. COLVIN, APPELLANT



No. 1288 Pittsburgh 1982, Appeal from the Judgment of Sentence of the Court of Common Pleas, Criminal Division, Warren County, No. 228 of 1981.

COUNSEL

Joseph A. Massa, Jr., Public Defender, Warren, for appellant.

Richard A. Hernan, Jr., District Attorney, Warren, for Commonwealth, appellee.

Rowley, Del Sole and Montgomery, JJ.

Author: Del Sole

[ 340 Pa. Super. Page 280]

On August 21, 1981, the Appellant threw a stone through a window at the residence owned and occupied by Charles and Donna Adams and in which Elizabeth and Frederick R. Adams, their children also resided. That stone broke the window and caused damage of some minor amount to the residence.

Subsequently, on August 28, 1981, at approximately 1:20 a.m. Charles and Donna Adams were asleep in their bedroom, Elizabeth Adams was in the bathroom and Frederick R. Adams was in the den watching television. At that time the Appellant threw another stone at the house, striking the side of the house making a noise which Frederick Adams heard but which no one else in the household heard. Frederick Adams then proceeded to the second floor to inform his family that someone had thrown a stone again at the house, waking his mother and father and calling this event to the attention of his sister.

Mrs. Donna Adams entered the hallway of the second floor to ask what happened and was told that someone had thrown a stone at the house. Upon hearing this news, she collapsed and died. As a result of these events, the Appellant was charged with two counts of criminal mischief and one count of involuntary manslaughter.

Following a non-jury trial, the Appellant was found guilty of both counts of criminal mischief and involuntary manslaughter and subsequently sentenced on the involuntary manslaughter charge to a period of incarceration of one to two years. It is from the sentence on the charge of involuntary manslaughter that the Appellant appeals.

The question simply stated is whether or not a person can be convicted of involuntary manslaughter when he commits a criminal act, and another person dies after being told that the act was committed. We think not.

First, we note that although the Appellant filed written post trial motions in boiler plate form, the motions were filed before Commonwealth v. Holmes, 315 Pa. Super. 256,

[ 340 Pa. Super. Page 281461]

A.2d 1268 (1983) and therefore the issues are properly preserved for Appellate review.

The trial court in its opinion sets forth the operative statute as 18 Pa.C.S.A. ยง 2504 which ...


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