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CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION CITY PHILADELPHIA v. THEODORE F. WOJTUSIK (05/19/87)

decided: May 19, 1987.

CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION OF THE CITY OF PHILADELPHIA, APPELLANT
v.
THEODORE F. WOJTUSIK, APPELLEE



Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County in the case of Civil Service Commission of The City of Philadelphia v. Theodore F. Wojtusik, No. 2482, 1985.

COUNSEL

Ralph J. Teti, Divisional Deputy City Solicitor, with him, Handsel H. Minyard, City Solicitor, for appellant.

John Rogers Carroll, with him, Peter W. Cooley, for appellee.

Judges Colins and Palladino, and Senior Judge Barbieri, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Senior Judge Barbieri.

Author: Barbieri

[ 106 Pa. Commw. Page 215]

The Philadelphia Civil Service Commission (Commission) appeals an Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County which reversed the Commission's

[ 106 Pa. Commw. Page 216]

    determination denying Theodore F. Wojtusik's appeal of his dismissal from the Philadelphia Police Department.

Wojtusik was dismissed from his position as a police officer with the Philadelphia Police Department for conduct unbecoming an officer. On September 29, 1982, while off duty, Wojtusik confronted two on-duty police officers, Van Note and McKeon, and demanded to know if they were looking for him and if they had been working the night before. Apparently one of the police officers had arrested a friend of Wojtusik's the previous night. Officer Van Note told Wojtusik he did not want to talk to him and to leave the area. Wojtusik became embroiled in an argument with Officer McKeon and was subsequently placed under arrest for drunken driving and disorderly conduct.*fn1 Although the record is characterized by conflicting testimony, the Commission found that after he had been arrested and handcuffed, Wojtusik kicked Officer McKeon.*fn2 McKeon then punched Wojtusik.

As a result of the altercation with Officers Van Note and McKeon on September 29, 1982, Wojtusik was charged with driving under the influence of alcohol, assault on police, resisting arrest, and disorderly conduct.*fn3 He was subsequently dismissed from the Philadelphia Police Department for conduct unbecoming an officer.

On appeal, the Philadelphia County Court of Common Pleas reversed and remanded to the Commission

[ 106 Pa. Commw. Page 217]

    for reconsideration.*fn4 The Commission issued a supplemental opinion specifically stating that it found Wojtusik primarily responsible for the altercation with Officer McKeon and again denying Wojtusik's appeal of his dismissal. Wojtusik appealed a second time to the lower court, which found no substantial evidence to support ...


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