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JOHN F. NOLAN v. COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA (05/23/88)

decided: May 23, 1988.

JOHN F. NOLAN, APPELLANT
v.
COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, APPELLEE



Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County, in the case of Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. John F. Nolan, No. S.A. 1523 of 1985.

COUNSEL

John A. Halley, for appellant.

Harold H. Cramer, Assistant Chief Counsel, with him, John L. Heaton, Chief Counsel, for appellee.

Judges MacPhail and Colins, and Senior Judge Kalish, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Senior Judge Kalish.

Author: Kalish

[ 116 Pa. Commw. Page 292]

John F. Nolan, appellant, appeals from an order of the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County which dismissed his appeal from an order of the Department of Transportation (DOT) suspending his driving privilege for fifteen days and revoking his driving license for a period of six months. We affirm in part and remand in part.

Appellant received notice from DOT that his driver's license was being revoked for a period of six months due to a violation of section 1543 of the Vehicle Code (Code), 75 Pa. C. S. § 1543 (driving while under suspension). He was also notified that he was receiving a suspension of fifteen days for violating section 3112 of the Code, 75 Pa. C. S. § 3112 (traffic light violation). Appellant contends that although he pled guilty and paid the fines and costs, DOT failed to show that his plea was knowing, intelligent and voluntary.

At the trial de novo, DOT introduced into evidence a suspension for failing to respond to a citation. Subsequently, appellant failed to respond to another citation, and his driving privileges were again suspended. Another suspension was imposed for operating a vehicle through a red traffic signal.

The record does not show that appellant's driving privileges were ever restored from these suspensions.

An appeal from a suspension of operating privileges is a civil proceeding. The underlying criminal conviction may not be attacked collaterally. Department of Transportation v. Valentine, 71 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 8, 453 A.2d 742 (1982).

The record is clear that appellant was convicted of two offenses for which his license was suspended.

Pursuant to Pa. R.A.P. 2744, an appellate court may award as costs damages as may be just, including counsel fees, for delay if it ...


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