Rule 583. Severance of Offenses or Defendants
The court may order separate trials of offenses or defendants, or provide other appropriate relief, if it appears that any party may be prejudiced by offenses or defendants being tried together.
Pa.R.Crim.P. 583. Under Rule 583, the prejudice the defendant suffers due to the joinder must be greater than the general prejudice any defendant suffers when the Commonwealth's evidence links him to a crime. Commonwealth v. Lauro, 819 A.2d 100, 107 (Pa. Super. 2003).
The "prejudice" of which Rule  speaks is not simply prejudice in the sense that appellant will be linked to the crimes for which he is being prosecuted, for that sort of prejudice is ostensibly the purpose of all Commonwealth evidence. The prejudice of which Rule  speaks is, rather, that which would occur if the evidence tended to convict [the] appellant only by showing his propensity to commit crimes, or because the jury was incapable of separating the evidence or could not avoid cumulating the evidence. Additionally, the admission of relevant evidence connecting a defendant to the crimes charged is a natural consequence of a criminal trial, and it is not grounds for severance by itself.
Id. (quoting Commonwealth v. Collins, 703 A.2d 418, 423 (Pa. 1997) (internal citations omitted, emphasis in original)).
Reading these rules together, our Supreme Court established the following test for severance matters:
Where the defendant moves to sever offenses not based on the same act or transaction...the court must therefore determine:  whether the evidence of each of the offenses would be admissible in a separate trial for the other;  whether such evidence is capable of separation by the jury so as to avoid danger of confusion; and, if the answers to these inquiries are in the affirmative,  whether the defendant will be unduly prejudiced by the consolidation of offenses.
Collins, 703 A.2d at 422 (quoting Commonwealth v. Lark, 543 A.2d 491, 496–497 (Pa. 1988)).
Pursuant to this test, we must first determine whether evidence of each of the offenses would be admissible in a separate trial for the other. In making this determination, we are mindful that: "[e]vidence of crimes other than the one in question is not admissible solely to show the defendant's bad character or propensity to commit crime." Collins, 703 A.2d at 422; Pa.R.E. 404(b)(1) (providing: "Evidence of a crime, wrong, or other act is not admissible to prove a person's character in order to show that on a particular occasion, the person acted in accordance with the character."). Nevertheless:
This evidence may be admissible for another purpose, such as proving motive, opportunity, intent, preparation, plan, knowledge, identity, absence of mistake, or lack of accident.
Pa.R.E. 404(b)(2). See also Melendez–Rodriguez, 856 A.2d at 1283 (reiterating "other crimes" evidence is admissible to show motive, intent, absence of mistake or accident, common scheme or plan, and identity). "Additionally, evidence of other crimes may be admitted where such evidence is part of the history of the case and forms part of the natural development of the facts." Lauro, 819 A.2d at 107 (quoting Collins, 703 A.2d at 423).
In the case before us, charges in the first information, CR-396-2011, stemmed from Appellant's burglary of a home on May 25, 2011. Appellant was apprehended at the home he had burglarized, was arrested based on the charges stemming from the burglary, and was taken to Magisterial District Judge Michael Shaw's office. N.T., 11/9/11, at 80-87, 100. Appellant, handcuffed, was being held for arraignment at the district judge's office. Id. at 86. Appellant subsequently escaped from the holding cell. Id. at 88-90. The charges of escape and theft of handcuffs in the second information, CR-397-2011, stemmed from this escape.
Upon review of the record, we conclude that evidence of each of the offenses would be admissible in a separate trial for the other. Evidence related to the charges stemming from the burglary would be admissible to establish why Appellant was being held in handcuffs and could establish a motive for his escape. Conversely, evidence of the escape would be admissible in a trial related to charges stemming from the burglary to establish Appellant's guilt. The evidence was not produced simply to establish prior bad acts. Evidence of the other crimes was admissible to establish a common scheme, plan or design embracing the commission of two or more crimes so related to each other that proof of one tends to prove the others. See Pa.R.E. 404(b)(2). Moreover, the evidence against Appellant formed part of the "natural development" of the facts and history of Appellant's case. See Lauro, 819 A.2d at 107.
We also conclude that the second prong of the severance inquiry, whether the evidence was capable of separation sufficient to avoid confusing the jury, must be answered affirmatively. Here, the evidence supporting each offense was established by several witnesses. Their testimony was limited to Appellant's actions, and the evidence was provided in such a manner so as to establish the natural history of the offenses. The evidence concerning the various charges was presented in a clear, chronological order. The pattern of facts presented to the jury was not complex. Thus, we conclude there was no risk of confusing the jury.
As such, we turn then to a determination of whether Appellant was prejudiced by the consolidation of these offenses. As previously noted, prejudice, when severance is the issue:
[i]s not simply prejudice in the sense that appellant will be linked to the crimes for which he is being prosecuted, for that sort of prejudice is ostensibly the purpose of all Commonwealth evidence. The prejudice of which Rule  speaks is rather that which would occur if the evidence tended to convict appellant only by showing his propensity to commit crimes, or because the jury was incapable of separating the evidence or could not avoid cumulating the evidence.
Lauro, 819 A.2d at 107. As the record shows, the evidence established the history and motive for the charges included in each information. The evidence was not provided solely for purposes of showing Appellant's propensity to commit crimes. As was said in Lark, 543 A.2d 491: "[This was a] series of crimes committed by the [appellant] which were all related. [The appellant] created the sequence of events and cannot fairly now demand that the ... matters be severed and tried in separate trials." Id. at 500. This is particularly so where Appellant, after being arrested and held on charges related to the burglary, escaped from the magisterial judge's office and then faced charges based on that escape. Accordingly, we cannot conclude that Appellant was prejudiced by having charges in matters docketed at CR-396-2011 and CR-397-2011 consolidated for purposes of trial. Thus, the trial court did not abuse its discretion in granting the Commonwealth's motion to join the offenses in a single trial.
In his next issue, Appellant asserts that the trial court erred in allowing two witnesses, Officer Bruce Hoffman and Magisterial District Judge Michael Shaw, to testify regarding the contents of a security video that allegedly shows Appellant escaping from a holding cell while awaiting preliminary arraignment. Appellant's Brief at 20. Appellant maintains that because the two witnesses were not personally present to observe the events captured on the video, they should not be permitted to testify regarding the contents of the video that the Commonwealth failed to produce. Id. Appellant contends that the Commonwealth's failure to preserve the security video prior to its deletion constituted a violation of the best evidence rule and bad faith on the part of the Commonwealth. Id. As a result, Appellant contends, the trial court's error in permitting testimony regarding this video footage warrants a new trial. Id. at 22.
Our standard of review for evidentiary issues is well settled:
Admission of evidence is a matter within the sound discretion of the trial court, and will not be reversed absent a showing that the trial court clearly abused its discretion. Not merely an error in judgment, an abuse of discretion occurs when the "law is overridden or misapplied, or the judgment exercised is manifestly unreasonable, or the result of partiality, prejudice, bias, or ill-will, as shown by the evidence on record."
Commonwealth v. Cooper, 941 A.2d 655, 667 (Pa. 2007) (citations omitted). Pennsylvania Rule of Evidence 1002 provides:
To prove the content of a writing, recording, or photograph, the original writing, recording, or photograph is required, except as otherwise provided in these rules, by other rules prescribed by the Supreme Court, or by statute.
Pa.R.E. 1002. "Writings and recordings" under Rule 1002 include electronic recordings and other forms of data compilation. Pa.R.E. 1001; Commonwealth v. Dent, 837 A.2d 571, 589 (Pa. Super. 2003). Pa.R.E. 1004(1) permits the admissibility of other evidence when the original is lost or destroyed, unless the proponent lost or destroyed it in bad faith.
The "best evidence" rule, now established in Pa.R.E. 1002, limits the method of proving the terms of a writing to the presentation of the original writing, where the terms of the instrument are material to the issue at hand, unless the original is shown to be unavailable through no fault of the proponent. The rule applies to the proof of the contents of documents when the contents of those documents are material to, rather than mere evidence of, the issues at bar. . . . The rule is not implicated just because evidence is relevant; the rule applies where the writing itself is necessary to that which must be proved. The best evidence rule is controlling only if the terms of a writing must be proved to make a case or provide a defense.
Commonwealth v. Townsend, 747 A.2d 376, 379-380 (Pa. Super. 2000) (citations and some quotation marks omitted). If the Commonwealth does not need to prove the contents of the writing or recording to prove the elements of the offense charged, then the Commonwealth is not required to introduce the original writing or recording. Dent, 837 A.2d at 590; see also Commonwealth v. Steward, 762 A.2d 721 (Pa. Super. 2000) (holding eyewitness testimony obviates need to produce videotape made simultaneously; videotape evidence does not rise to level of "best evidence" when eyewitness testifies from personal knowledge).
We cannot agree with Appellant that the best evidence rule is implicated in this case. As noted, the best evidence rule is controlling only if the terms of a writing, or in this case, contents of the video, must be proved to make a case or provide a defense. Because the video is merely additional evidence of the escape and is not necessary to establish the elements of Appellant's escape and theft of the handcuffs, the best evidence rule is not controlling.
Testimony from Officer Hoffman and Magistrate Judge Shaw establish that Appellant was handcuffed and placed in the holding cell at Magisterial District Judge Shaw's office on May 25, 2011. N.T., 11/9/11, at 86-87, 102-103. Upon Officer Hoffman's return to the holding cell in order to retrieve Appellant, Appellant was no longer in the holding cell. Id. at 89, 103. An unsuccessful search for Appellant ensued that evening. Id. at 89-90, 103. Testimony from Officer Hoffman established that Appellant was apprehended three or four days later at a nearby friend's residence. Id. at 96.
The owner of that nearby residence, Nancy Caskey, testified that on an evening in late May of 2011, Appellant, wearing handcuffs, showed up at her residence. N.T., 11/9/11, at 110-112. Appellant informed Ms. Caskey that he had walked out of Judge Shaw's office. Id. at 114. Ms. Caskey testified that Magistrate Judge Shaw's office is approximately one and one-half blocks from her residence. Id. at 112. Ms. Caskey also testified that she provided tools and that her then-boyfriend, Raymond Saxer, cut off Appellant's handcuffs. Id. at 113-115. Ms. Caskey stated that the police apprehended Appellant at her residence a day or two later. Id. at 114.
Finally, Appellant also took the stand to testify. Most significantly, Appellant admitted at trial that he left Judge Shaw's office while awaiting arraignment. Id. at 138.
Accordingly, any evidence allegedly included on the video footage, including testimony from Officer Hoffman and Judge Shaw regarding the contents of the video, was unnecessary for conviction of Appellant on the charges of escape and theft. Officer Hoffman and Judge Shaw provided testimony regarding Appellant's theft and escape based on their personal, first-hand knowledge: testimony of placing Appellant in handcuffs in the holding cell after arrest; Appellant not being in the holding after a period of time; and Appellant's apprehension days later at a nearby friend's residence. This testimony was not based on the witnesses' viewing of the video. Furthermore, Ms. Caskey's testimony helped to further satisfy the elements necessary for conviction on the charges of escape and theft. More importantly, Appellant's own admission made the video footage completely unnecessary to establishing the elements of the crimes. Thus, the surveillance videotape was not the "best evidence" of Appellant's escape from the District Judge's office and related theft of the handcuffs. The Commonwealth's failure to provide that video and the trial court's allowance of witnesses' testimony regarding the video footage was not in violation of the best evidence rule, did not result in prejudice to Appellant, and does not require a new trial. Thus, Appellant's claim fails. 
In his third issue, Appellant asserts that the trial court erred in imposing aggravated range sentences when there were insufficient aggravating factors. Appellant's Briefs at 22. Appellant maintains that the trial court failed to consider Appellant's background and circumstances when it sentenced Appellant to a minimum of twenty-seven months and a maximum of five years for the burglary offense and a minimum of eighteen months to a maximum of five years for the escape offense. Id. It is Appellant's position that a sentence within the standard range, even the upper end of the standard range, would be consistent with the gravity of the offense, the need for public protection, and Appellant's need for rehabilitation. Id. Appellant's claims are challenges to the discretionary aspects of his sentence.
Where an appellant challenges the discretionary aspects of a sentence there is no automatic right to appeal, and an appellant's appeal should be deemed a petition for allowance of appeal. In re W.H.M., Jr., 932 A.2d 155, 162 (Pa. Super. 2007). As we observed in Commonwealth v. Moury, 992 A.2d 162, 170 (Pa. Super. 2010) (citing Commonwealth v. Evans, 901 A.2d 528 (Pa. Super. 2006)):
An appellant challenging the discretionary aspects of his sentence must invoke this Court's jurisdiction by satisfying a four-part test:
[W]e conduct a four-part analysis to determine: (1) whether appellant has filed a timely notice of appeal, see Pa.R.A.P. 902 and 903; (2) whether the issue was properly preserved at sentencing or in a motion to reconsider and modify sentence, see Pa.R.Crim.P. ; (3) whether appellant's brief has a fatal defect, Pa.R.A.P. 2119(f); and (4) whether there is a substantial question that the sentence appealed from is not appropriate under the Sentencing Code, 42 Pa.C.S.A. § 9781(b).
Id. at 170. Whether a particular issue constitutes a substantial question about the appropriateness of sentence is a question to be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Commonwealth v. Kenner, 784 A.2d 808, 811 (Pa. Super. 2001).
Here, the first three requirements of the four-part test are met: Appellant filed a timely appeal; Appellant preserved the issue of imposition of a sentence in the aggravated range without supporting factors; and Appellant included a statement raising this issue in his brief pursuant to Rule 2119(f). Moury, 992 A.2d at 170. Therefore, we address whether Appellant raises a substantial question requiring us to review the discretionary aspects of the sentence imposed by the sentencing court.
Allowance of appeal will be permitted only when the appellate court determines that there is a substantial question that the sentence is not appropriate under the Sentencing Code. Commonwealth v. Hartle, 894 A.2d 800, 805 (Pa. Super. 2006). A substantial question exists where an appellant sets forth a plausible argument that the sentence violates a particular provision of the Sentencing Code or is contrary to the fundamental norms underlying the sentencing process. Id. This Court does not accept bald assertions of sentencing errors. Commonwealth v. Malovich, 903 A.2d 1247, 1252 (Pa. Super. 2006). An appellant must articulate the reasons the sentencing court's actions violated the sentencing code. Id. Indeed, our Supreme Court has clearly instructed that:
only where the Appellant's Rule 2119(f) statement sufficiently articulates the manner in which the sentence violates either a specific provision of the sentencing scheme set forth in the Sentencing Code or a particular fundamental norm underlying the sentencing process, will such a statement be deemed adequate to raise a substantial question so as to permit a grant of allowance of appeal of the discretionary aspects of the sentence.
Commonwealth v. Mouzon, 812 A.2d 617, 627 (Pa. 2002).
An appellant's assertion that a sentencing court considered improper factors in placing a sentence in the aggravated range presents a substantial question and thus may be reviewed by this Court. Commonwealth v. Stewart, 867 A.2d 589, 592 (Pa. Super. 2005). As presented, Appellant raises a substantial question as to the discretionary aspects of his sentence. Thus, we will review this claim.
Our standard of review concerning the discretionary aspects of sentencing is as follows:
Sentencing is a matter vested in the sound discretion of the sentencing judge, and a sentence will not be disturbed on appeal absent a manifest abuse of discretion. In this context, an abuse of discretion is not shown merely by an error in judgment. Rather, the appellant must establish, by reference to the record, that the sentencing court ignored or misapplied the law, exercised its judgment for reasons of partiality, prejudice, bias or ill will, or arrived at a manifestly unreasonable decision.
Commonwealth v. Rodda, 723 A.2d 212, 214 (Pa.Super.1999) (en banc) (internal quotation marks and citations omitted).
"[I]n fashioning [a] sentence, a judge is obligated 'to follow the general principle that the sentence imposed should call for confinement that is consistent with the protection of the public, the gravity of the offense as it relates to the impact on the life of the victim and on the community, and the rehabilitative needs of the defendant.'" Commonwealth v. Monahan, 860 A.2d 180, 184 (Pa.Super.2004). "[A] court is required to consider the particular circumstances of the offense and the character of the defendant." Commonwealth v. Griffin, 804 A.2d 1, 10 (Pa.Super.2002), appeal denied, 582 Pa. 671, 868 A.2d 1198 (2005) (citing Commonwealth v. Burns, 765 A.2d 1144 (Pa.Super.2000), appeal denied, 566 Pa. 657, 782 A.2d 542 (2001)). "In particular, the court should refer to the defendant's prior criminal record, his age, personal characteristics and his potential for rehabilitation." Griffin, supra. See also Commonwealth v. Wise, 848 A.2d 932 (Pa.Super.2004), appeal denied, 581 Pa. 676, 863 A.2d 1146 (2004) (holding sentencing court abused its discretion in utilizing thirteen-year-old DUI conviction to justify imposing aggravated-range sentence following subsequent DUI conviction).
The trial court provided the following explanation for sentencing Appellant in the aggravated range:
It is apparent that the court adequately and fairly considered all the necessary factors before it determined Appellant's sentence. Thus, based on the record before us, we are satisfied that the trial court did not ignore or misapply the law, did consider legal factors to determine an aggravated range sentence, and did not arrive at a manifestly unreasonable decision. Accordingly, we conclude that the court did not abuse its discretion when it sentenced Appellant in the aggravated range.
Judgment of sentence affirmed.