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COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA v. JOHN ALBERT BLOOD (08/11/86)

submitted: August 11, 1986.

COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA
v.
JOHN ALBERT BLOOD, APPELLANT



Appeal from the Judgment of Sentence of February 27, 1986, in the Court of Common Pleas of Mercer County, Criminal Division, at Nos. 420, 464 Criminal 1984.

COUNSEL

Robert G. Kochems, Assistant Public Defender, Mercer, for appellant.

Charles S. Hersh, Assistant District Attorney, Hermitage, for Com., appellee.

Tamilia, Johnson and Hester, JJ.

Author: Hester

[ 357 Pa. Super. Page 162]

Appellant challenges his sentences for burglary and escape alleging that the trial court abused its discretion in failing to consider appellant's schizophrenia and recent progress in treatment of his mental illness as mitigating factors justifying a more lenient sentence. We hold that the sentences reflect a proper exercise of the discretion

[ 357 Pa. Super. Page 163]

    reposed in the sentencing court, and affirm the judgment of sentence.

Appellant, John Blood, escaped from prison in Mercer County on June 16, 1984. To aid his escape, he burglarized a house to obtain keys to a truck parked outside, stole the truck and fled to Illinois, where he was apprehended. Pursuant to a plea agreement, appellant pled guilty to escape and burglary; in return, the Commonwealth nolle prossed other charges against him.

Appellant's sole argument is that the sentencing judge did not give due consideration to his severe mental problems. He claims the sentence "was an abuse of discretion because it is excessive in length and not tailored to the specific needs of the defendant, the ends of justice, or the community's welfare." Brief for appellant at 7. He claims that "a relatively short period in a minimum security facility with a mental health treatment program and then a long period of parole which would insure his compliance with out-patient mental health treatment" would have been an appropriate sentence. Id. at 8-9.

We reject this argument for two reasons. First, contrary to the belief of appellant, id. at 4-5, the Commonwealth, brief for appellee at 4, and the sentencing court, Rule 1925 opinion, 5/13/86, at 3, appellant's sentence was within the range of the sentencing guidelines. 204 Pa.Code Ch. 303. He received concurrent sentences of three to six years for burglary and two to four years for escape. With a prior record score of six and offense gravity scores of six and four for burglary of a dwelling and escape, respectively, the minimum sentence guideline ranges were 33 to 49 months and 21 to 30 months for the respective offenses. 204 Pa.Code ยง 303.8. Appellant benefitted from the court's use of an offense gravity score of five for the burglary, when the score should have been six for burglary of a dwelling.

Of greater significance was the sentencing court's misunderstanding of the guidelines' provision on sentencing for convictions arising ...


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