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[U] Commonwealth v. Hackley

Superior Court of Pennsylvania

March 10, 2014



Appeal from the Judgment of Sentence Entered July 12, 2012, In the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County, Criminal Division, at Nos. CP-51-CR-0008012-2011; CP-51-CR-0008013-2011; CP-51-CR-0008994-2011; CP-51-CR-0009931-2011.




Appellant, Charles Hackley, appeals from the judgment of sentence entered on July 12, 2012, in the Philadelphia County Court of Common Pleas. We affirm.

The relevant factual history is set forth below:
This case involved four incidents that occurred on the campus of Drexel University in Philadelphia. The first incident took place on March 9, 2011, at approximately 11:55 a.m. in Randall Hall, a Drexel University building located at 3117-23 Chestnut Street. (N.T. 4/30/12, pp. 13-14). Henry Disston, the director of a high school outreach program, was in his office in Randall Hall talking on the telephone when he heard a noise. Mr. Disston looked over and saw a black male grabbing his computer bag. (N.T. 4/30/12, p. 14). When Mr. Disston yelled "Hey", the male fled empty-handed. (N.T. 4/30/12, p. 15). Mr. Disston chased the male down the hallway across to the next building but lost sight of him. When Mr. Disston returned to his office, he noticed that his computer, which he normally kept open, had been closed down and disconnected from its power source. (N.T. 4/30/12, pp. 15-16). Police dusted the computer for fingerprints in the area where the perpetrator would have touched the computer in order to close it. (N.T. 4/30/12, p. 18). One of the fingerprints found on the computer belonged to Appellant. (N.T. 5/4/12, pp. 60-65).
On May 12, 201[1] at approximately 1:00 p.m., Drexel student Ian Woskey was lying in bed when someone came into his apartment in the University Crossings Building located at 3175 JFK Boulevard. (N.T. 4/30/12, p. 28). The door to the apartment was unlocked. The apartment building houses students at Drexel University. When Mr. Woskey asked if anyone was there, a male who looked like Appellant2 said he was looking for someone named Aaron. Mr. Woskey told him he had the wrong apartment. (N.T. 4/30/12, pp. 30-31). Mr. Woskey did not see the intruder leave but heard the door close. (N.T. 4/30/12, pp. 30-31). Shortly thereafter he noticed a number of items missing from the apartment including two laptops, two X Box games, an X Box controller and a PSP. (N.T. 4/30/12, p. 35). The two laptops taken from the living room belonged to his roommate, Robert Speck. (N.T. 4/30/12, pp. 63-65). All of Mr. Woskey's property[,] with the exception of a memory stick and the two laptop computers[,] was recovered by police at Appellant's residence. N.T. 4/30/12, pp. 41, 65).
2 Mr. Woskey attended a lineup where he identified someone other than appellant, but did identify appellant at the subsequent preliminary hearing. N.T. 4-30-12, pp. 42, 44.
On May 17, 2011, at around noon, Drexel roommates James Miller and Matthew Schwalm left their apartment in the University Crossings Building to get some lunch. (N.T. 4/30/12, pp. 96-97). They did not lock the door when they left because another roommate was asleep in his bedroom. When Mr. Miller and Mr. Schwalm returned approximately twenty minutes later, they noticed two laptop computers, an external hard drive, an iPod Touch, an X Box game, and various other electronics were missing. (N.T. 4/30/12, pp. 98-100, 108-111). Fingerprints were lifted from the area where the items had been taken. One of those prints belonged to Appellant. (N.T. 5/4/12, pp. 18-19, 66-68).
At approximately 12:28 p.m. on May 17, 2011, Drexel student Rhaeana Gamber was in the bathroom of her residence in the University Crossings Building when she heard someone in the apartment. (N.T. 4/30/12, pp. 85-86). Ms. Gamber had left the door unlocked when she came home. When she emerged from the bathroom Ms. Gamber observed the door wide open and items knocked over. (N.T. 4/30/12, pp. 87-88). Her laptop computer which had been sitting on her bed was gone. The laptop was later recovered by police in Appellant's residence and returned to her. (N.T. 4/30/12, pp. 88-91). When Amy Ascuitto, Ms. Gamber's roommate, returned to the apartment shortly thereafter, she also discovered her laptop computer as well as its case were missing. Unlike her roommate's computer, Ms. Ascuitto's laptop was never recovered. (N.T. 4/30/12, pp. 73-76). Surveillance video from the hallway during the time period of the burglary showed a male wearing a jacket with a distinctive white "V" stripe pattern.
On June 1, 2011, police executed a search warrant for Appellant's residence located at 2416 Corlies Street in Philadelphia. In the second floor middle bedroom police found a black Nike track jacket with a white V-shaped pattern on the front and multiple pieces of property taken in the burglaries including various X Box games, X Box controllers, a Sony Playstation and Sony Playstation games, an Assas[s]ins Creed Brotherhood case and a silver Macbook computer. (N.T. 5/4/12, p. 32). Mail and a Visa debit card in Appellant's name were also found in the bedroom. (N.T. 5/4/12, p. 32). On the computer stolen from Ms. Gamber were the Appellant's fingerprints, multiple pictures of Appellant, and a video of Appellant engaging in sexual activity with a female. (N.T. 5/4/12, p. 34). The Assas[s]ins Creed Brotherhood case was identified as having been taken from Mr. Miller's and Mr. Schwalm's apartment. The X Box games and a PSP had been taken from Mr. Woskey's and Mr. Speck's apartment.

Trial Court Opinion, 4/2/13, at 3-5.

The trial court explained the procedural ...

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