Argued January 28, 2015
Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas, Allegheny County, Entered June 2, 2014, Orphans' Court Division No(s): CC 140037. Before ZOTTOLA, J.
Allen R. Thompson, Bechtelsville, for appellant.
Paul R. Molter, Pittsburgh, for Allegheny County Law Dept., participating party.
Carlton M. Smith, Harrisburg, for Pennsylvania State Police, participating party.
BEFORE: BOWES, OLSON, and STRASSBURGER,[*] JJ.
T.B. appeals from the order of June 2, 2014, which denied his petition for expungement of mental health records and restoration of rights. We affirm.
The facts of this case can be summarized as follows. On November 26, 2008, T.B. cut his face in several places after returning to his parents' house following a night of consuming alcohol and celebrating his twenty-first birthday. T.B.'s father saw blood on T.B.'s face after he got out of the shower, decided to check on him early in the morning, and discovered the cuts were still bleeding. An ambulance was called, and T.B. went to Jefferson Regional Medical Center (Jefferson) to get the cuts on his face treated. T.B. arrived at the hospital at 9:15 a.m. T.B.'s mother arrived shortly thereafter, and she voiced concern that T.B. was suicidal. She then worked with Jefferson to have T.B. committed for psychiatric treatment involuntarily pursuant to 50 P.S. § 7302 of the Mental Health Procedures Act (MHPA). She completed the application required under section 7302(a), and a warrant pursuant to section 7302(a)(1) was issued at 1:21 p.m. A physician examined T.B. at 1:30 p.m. and determined that T.B. had self-mutilated and was a danger to himself. Thus, T.B. was committed involuntarily for the statutory 120-hour period, and was released from Jefferson on November 30, 2008.
On January 30, 2014, T.B. filed a petition to " vacate and/or expunge involuntary civil commitment." Petition, 1/30/2014. Specifically, T.B. argued, inter alia, that his involuntary commitment was void ab initio because he was not examined by a physician within two hours of his arrival at
Jefferson pursuant to 50 P.S. § 7302(b) (" A person taken to a facility shall be examined by a physician within two hours of arrival...." ). T.B. asserted that his involuntary commitment " has caused him to suffer a loss of liberty and reputation." Id. at 2 (unnumbered). Further, T.B. contended that he " suffers from permanent deprivation of fundamental state and federal constitutional rights as a direct result of his involuntary commitment[.]" Id.
A hearing was held on April 29, 2014. After the hearing, the orphans' court concluded " that when a patient voluntarily receives treatment at a hospital and a subsequent 302 is completed, the requirement that a physician examine the patient within two hours, under 50 P.S. § 7302(b), begins when the 302 is authorized." Orphans' Court Opinion, 9/8/2014, at 3. Accordingly, the orphans' court held that because the warrant was authorized at 1:21 p.m., and T.B. was examined by a physician at 1:30 p.m., well within the two-hour ...