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MICHAEL FRANCIS RADICE v. COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA (08/18/88)

decided: August 18, 1988.

MICHAEL FRANCIS RADICE, APPELLANT
v.
COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION, BUREAU OF TRAFFIC SAFETY, APPELLEE



Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Luzerne County, in the case of Michael Francis Radice v. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Department of Transportation, No. 2987-C of 1987.

COUNSEL

James S. Palermo, for appellant.

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

Judges Craig and Palladino, and Senior Judge Barbieri, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Senior Judge Barbieri. Judge Palladino concurs in the result as to affirmance of the trial court and dissents as to the remand for counsel fees.

Author: Barbieri

[ 118 Pa. Commw. Page 628]

Michael Francis Radice (Licensee) appeals an order of the Luzerne County Court of Common Pleas dismissing his appeal from a one year suspension of his driving

[ 118 Pa. Commw. Page 629]

    privilege pursuant to Section 1543(c) of the Vehicle Code (Code).*fn1

By official notice dated June 15, 1987, the Department of Transportation (DOT) suspended Licensee's driving privileges for a period of one year as a result of his conviction on March 4, 1987 for driving while his license was under suspension.

On February 13, 1987, Licensee was involved in a single vehicle accident in Cresson, Pennsylvania. As a result of the accident he received citations for driving at an unsafe speed and another for driving while his license was under suspension. Prior to this accident, Licensee had received traffic citations in New York and Connecticut which he failed to pay. As a result of reciprocal enforcement agreements, these two citations were forwarded by New York and Connecticut to DOT.

Apparently, in November of 1986, DOT notified Licensee that his driving privileges would be suspended if he did not pay the outstanding fine on the Connecticut citation.*fn2 This fine was not paid and on December 30, 1986, Licensee's driving privileges were suspended pursuant to Section 6146 of the Code.*fn3 Licensee alleges

[ 118 Pa. Commw. Page 630]

    that he was unaware of this suspension until February 13, 1987, when the local police investigating the accident in Cresson, ...


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