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[U] In re Z.R.

Superior Court of Pennsylvania

February 26, 2014

IN THE INTEREST OF Z.R., a minor APPEAL OF Z.R.

NON-PRECEDENTIAL DECISION

Appeal from the Dispositional Order of October 31, 2012 In the Court of Common Pleas of Delaware County Juvenile Division at No: CP-23-JU-1140-2012

BEFORE: PANELLA, OLSON and PLATT, [*] JJ.

MEMORANDUM

OLSON, J.

Appellant, Z.R., appeals from the order of disposition entered on October 31, 2012 in the Juvenile Division of the Court of Common Pleas of Delaware County in which the court adjudicated Z.R. delinquent on the charges of aggravated assault, [1] possessing instrument of crime, [2] recklessly endangering another person, [3] and disorderly conduct.[4] On appeal, counsel for Appellant seeks to withdraw from representation pursuant to Commonwealth v. McClendon, 434 A.2d 1185 (Pa. 1981), and its federal precursor, Anders v. California, 386 U.S. 738 (1968). We grant the petition to withdraw and affirm.

The juvenile court summarized the facts of this case as follows:

Stated in a summary fashion, we offer the rendition of the events of approximately 8:20 in the evening of August 16, 2012. Z.R.[, ] a twelve year-old, resides with his mother in the 400 block of Highland Avenue, Chester City, Delaware County, Pennsylvania. When the victim's paramour arrived home from a shopping trip, she exchanged words with her next-door neighbor, Z.R.'s mother. The verbal skirmish erupted into a full blown melee including the hurling of objects and the involvement of other family members. Items were tossed between the porches of the homes of those involved. Some were thrown across the narrow alley between the properties, others woundup in the street.
The police were summoned by the victim's family. While the police were enroute, the victim stood on his porch, anxious for their arrival. As the victim waited, Z.R. approached from ground level, reached up through the spindles of the victim's porch and plunged a steak knife into the upper portion of the victim's leg.

Juvenile Court Opinion, 3/11/13, at 1-2.

On October 31, 2012, the juvenile court held a hearing at which it adjudicated Appellant delinquent on the charges of aggravated assault, possessing instrument of crime, recklessly endangering another person, and disorderly conduct and sentenced him, inter alia, to probation and 40 hours of community service. On November 21, 2012, the Office of the Public Defender of Delaware County, which had represented Appellant to that point, filed a conflict petition, requesting appointment of substitute counsel for appeal because Appellant's mother was interested in alleging ineffective assistance of counsel. On November 30, 2012, the Public Defender of Delaware County filed a notice of appeal to preserve Appellant's right to appeal. That same day, the juvenile court appointed substitute counsel to represent Appellant.

On November 30, 2012, the juvenile court entered an order pursuant to Pennsylvania Rule of Appellate Procedure 1925(b) directing Appellant to file a concise statement of errors complaint of on appeal ("concise statement") within 21 days. Appellant failed to file a concise statement and, on March 11, 2013, the juvenile court filed an opinion addressing certain issues raised at trial. We previously remanded this case for the filing of a concise statement nunc pro tunc. In the Interest of Z.R., 3336 EDA 2012 (Pa.Super. Oct. 11, 2013) (unpublished memorandum). Counsel subsequently filed a concise statement in the juvenile court and the juvenile court issued a supplemental Rule 1925(a) opinion. On November 20, 2013, we ordered Appellant to file his brief on or before December 30, 2013. Counsel failed to comply with our order. Thereafter, on January 9, 2014, we again ordered counsel to file either an advocate's brief or a petition to withdraw as counsel and an Anders brief on or before January 16, 2014. On January 15, 2014, counsel filed a petition to withdraw as counsel and an accompanying Anders brief.

Counsel's Anders brief presents one issue for our review:

Whether the [juvenile] court clearly abused its discretion in admitting evidence of the use of a knife at trial when the Commonwealth failed to produce the knife on the ...

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