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[U] Commonwealth v. Beck

Superior Court of Pennsylvania

March 6, 2014

COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, Appellee
v.
VAUGHN ANTHONY BECK, Appellant

NON-PRECEDENTIAL DECISION

Appeal from the Judgment of Sentence May 23, 2012 In the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County Criminal Division at No(s): CP-02-CR-0009123-2011, CP-02-CR-0016194-2010.

BEFORE: BOWES, ALLEN, and MUSMANNO, JJ.

MEMORANDUM

BOWES, J.

Vaughn Anthony Beck appeals from the May 23, 2012 judgment of sentence imposed after he entered a negotiated guilty plea in two separate criminal actions to one count each of possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance ("PWID"), possession of a controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia, criminal conspiracy, assault by prisoner, and terroristic threats. Counsel has filed a petition to withdraw from representation and a brief pursuant to Anders v. California, 386 U.S. 738 (1967), and Commonwealth v. Santiago, 978 A.2d 349 (Pa. 2009). We grant counsel's petition to withdraw, and affirm.

We glean the facts giving rise to the charges at No. CP-02-CR-0016194-2010 from the Commonwealth's on-the-record proffer of evidence during the guilty plea proceeding. Appellant engaged in a drug deal with an undercover Pennsylvania State Trooper in the parking lot of a Walmart store in the North Versailles section of Allegheny County. A subsequent search of the vehicle conducted by the trooper and an assisting officer yielded four cell phones owned by Appellant and 10.4 grams of a substance later verified as heroin. N.T. Guilty Pleas & Sentencing, 5/23/12, at 5-9. The charges of terroristic threats and assault by a prisoner at No. CP-02-CR-0009123-2011, resulted from Appellant punching a prison guard in the face and threatening to throw a cup of urine at the next person to open his cell door. N.T. Preliminary Hearing, 7/26/11, at 3-18.

Following the unsuccessful litigation of a suppression motion, Appellant entered a negotiated guilty plea in the consolidated actions. This plea agreement provided that: (1) Appellant would plead guilty to all charges; (2) the Commonwealth would not seek the minimum mandatory sentence of five years of incarceration for possession with the intent to deliver; (3) Appellant would receive a sentence of four to eight years of imprisonment for possession with the intent to deliver; and (4) Appellant would receive a consecutive sentence of one and one-half to three years of incarceration for assault by prisoner. After Appellant completed both a written and oral colloquy, the court sentenced Appellant in accordance with the terms of the negotiated plea agreement.

Appellant timely filed a pro se post-sentence motion, alleging that his sentence was excessive. Instant counsel was appointed to represent Appellant, and the court granted leave for counsel to file an amended post- sentence motion.[1] Appellant filed a timely notice of appeal, and the trial court ordered him to file a Pa.R.A.P. 1925(b) concise statement of errors complained of on appeal. Pursuant to Pa.R.A.P. 1925(b) and 1925(c)(4), counsel for Appellant filed a concise statement and advised the court he would be filing an Anders brief and petition to withdraw.

Counsel for Appellant has presented four issues on appeal.

1. Whether the plea was not knowingly, intelligently, and voluntarily entered?
2. Whether counsel gave ineffective assistance for allowing Appellant to plead guilty when the plea was unknowingly, unintelligently and involuntarily entered?
3. Whether the trial court abused its discretion in sentencing Appellant?
4. Whether the sentence was ...

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