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GLEN MILLS SCHOOLS v. COURT COMMON PLEAS PHILADELPHIA COUNTY (02/13/87)

decided: February 13, 1987.

GLEN MILLS SCHOOLS, PETITIONER,
v.
COURT OF COMMON PLEAS OF PHILADELPHIA COUNTY, RESPONDENT



Petition for a writ of Prohibition.

COUNSEL

Richard A. Sprague, Bruce L. Thall, J. Shane Creamer, Philadelphia, for petitioner.

Howland W. Abramson, Philadelphia, for respondent.

John W. Packel, Chief, Appeals Div., Benjamin Lerner, Defender, Karl Baker, Asst. Defender, Elaine DeMasse, Deputy Chief, Appeals Div., Philadelphia, for Intervenor -- Christopher T.

Nix, C.j., and Larsen, Flaherty, McDermott, Hutchinson, Zappala and Papadakos, JJ. Hutchinson, J., joins in this opinion of the Court and files a concurring opinion. Nix, C.j., joins in this opinion of the Court and joins in the concurring opinion of Hutchinson, J.

Author: Larsen

[ 513 Pa. Page 311]

Opinion OF THE COURT

This matter is before us on a petition brought by Glen Mills Schools (Glen Mills) for a writ of prohibition directed

[ 513 Pa. Page 312]

    to the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County. Glen Mills seeks to have this Court invalidate the Common Pleas Court Order committing Christopher T., a juvenile, to its facility. Glen Mills asks that the juvenile be remanded to the custody of the Family Division of the Philadelphia Court for commitment elsewhere. The respondent Common Pleas Court replied to the petition by filing preliminary objections. In its objections the respondent alleges, inter alia, that "petitioner has an adequate remedy at law by way of appeal or intervention and appeal"; that the Common Pleas Court has jurisdiction over the delinquency proceeding; and that "there is no extreme necessity for the relief requested to secure order and regularity in judicial proceedings" The juvenile, Christopher T. intervened in the proceedings and filed an answer to the petition. The intervenor's answer avers that the respondent Common Pleas Court acted properly and within its jurisdiction in denying the request of Glen Mills Schools that Christopher T. be remanded to the custody of the court for commitment to another facility. After a full review of this matter, we grant the writ of prohibition.

The facts of this case are as follows: Christopher T., a juvenile, age 17, was taken into custody on March 29, 1986 and charged with robbery, theft, receiving stolen property, simple assault and criminal conspiracy. On August 26, 1986, Christopher T. was adjudicated delinquent on all charges. Following the adjudication, the juvenile was referred to Glen Mills Schools pending a dispositional hearing. On September 4, 1986, Christopher T. was ordered committed to the Glen Mills Schools residential program. A review date was set for November 6, 1986.

Glen Mills Schools is a private non-profit corporation that provides a residential program for adjudicated male delinquents between the ages of 14 and 18. The Glen Mills program provides an open environment, without guards, cells or high walls. Those young men accepted into the program are by referral pursuant ...


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