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COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA v. GREGORY WILLIAMS (04/09/85)

submitted: April 9, 1985.

COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA
v.
GREGORY WILLIAMS, APPELLANT



Appeal from Judgment of Sentence of the Court of Common Pleas, Criminal Division, of Beaver County, No. 167 of 1983.

COUNSEL

William R. Hare, Assistant Public Defender, Beaver, for appellant.

Edward J. Tocci, District Attorney, Beaver, for Commonwealth, appellee.

Wieand, Johnson and Montgomery, JJ.

Author: Wieand

[ 344 Pa. Super. Page 496]

Gregory Williams was tried by jury and was found guilty of rape, aggravated assault, and making terroristic threats in connection with a beating inflicted upon his former girl friend on November 29, 1982, in Aliquippa, Beaver County. On direct appeal from consecutive sentences imposed for rape and aggravated assault, Williams complains of evidentiary rulings made by the trial court and ineffective assistance allegedly rendered by counsel. He also contends that his conviction for aggravated assault merged for sentencing purposes in the conviction for rape. We find neither trial nor sentencing error, but, because there is arguable merit in several of Williams' averments that trial counsel rendered ineffective assistance, we remand for an evidentiary hearing.

Williams and Jacqueline Jamison had been living together but had separated. On November 29, 1982, while Ms. Jamison was sitting in a bar in Aliquippa, Williams entered and asked her to come outside to talk to him about a money matter he wished to discuss. Jamison left the bar, and the two of them walked down the street, arguing loudly, with Williams pushing and threatening Jamison. When they entered a wooded lot at the end of the street, Williams began beating his former girl friend. He knocked her down and continued to beat her when she tried to rise. According to the Commonwealth's evidence, Williams then drew a knife and used it to cut Jamison's pantyhose and underwear. He also cut her legs, ankle and hand. Finally, he forced her to have sexual intercourse with him. Williams conceded that he had beaten his former girl friend but denied that he had cut her with a knife. They had resolved their dispute, he contended, and then had engaged in consensual intercourse. Thereafter, in any event, they returned to the bar, where a friend of the victim intervened. She took Jamison to a nearby house, where Jamison's missing shoes were replaced. The police were then notified.

[ 344 Pa. Super. Page 497]

While the victim was at the police station, she was met by her sister, Carol Ann Kimbrough, who had been summoned. Carol Ann testified at trial to the observations which she had made regarding her sister's condition. Despite the meager information which the witness was able to impart to the jury, defense counsel undertook extensive cross-examination. In response to questions asked by defense counsel, Carol Ann told the jury that she had disapproved of the relationship between appellant and her sister, that appellant had been in the penitentiary, and that appellant had previously shot the victim in the mouth. Then the following occurred:

Q. Okay. Did you have any knowledge that [Jacqueline] was a prostitute?

A. Vaguely. I couldn't put my finger on it. I questioned her about it.

Q. Did she ever admit this to you?

A. No, she did not.

Q. Did you ever personally file charges against Gregory Williams?

A. I never personally filed charges against him. My father did. My 78-year-old father did, and we had a hearing down at Mr. Ayoob's office, ...


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