from the Judgment of Sentence dated June 4, 2015 In the Court
of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County Criminal Division at
BEFORE: DUBOW, J., SOLANO, J., and PLATT, J. [*]
Richard A. Chambers, appeals from the judgment of sentence
imposed by the trial court after it convicted him at a bench
trial of aggravated assault, conspiracy, possession of an
instrument of crime (PIC), terroristic threats, simple
assault, and recklessly endangering another
person. Appellant challenges the sufficiency of
the evidence supporting his convictions, and specifically
contends that the trial court erred in its characterization
of mace as a deadly weapon. Upon review, we affirm.
convictions arose from a physical altercation with Mr. Calvin
Wilson that occurred on the evening of May 15, 2014, at North
15th Street in Philadelphia. Mr. Wilson was in his car,
returning to his apartment with his girlfriend and her two
grandchildren, when he observed a white Jeep blocking the
driveway. Mr. Wilson saw Appellant standing by the
driver's door of the Jeep. He explained:
As I approached the driveway, I blew my horn and I wanted to
turn into the driveway. But you couldn't turn in because
the white jeep was sitting there. So I rolled my window down
and I asked [Appellant] can he - why are you blocking the
driveway? Can you move from the driveway?
N.T., 3/23/15, at 13. Appellant and the white Jeep did not
move, so Mr. Wilson attempted to drive around them.
Wilson then exited his car and exchanged words with
Appellant. He noticed two women inside the Jeep. Then Mr.
Wilson saw Appellant "raise his arm" and
"throw the first punch, " which resulted in
"fists flying" between the two men. N.T., 3/23/15,
at 18, 34, 39. Next, an individual or individuals, including
one or more of the women, pulled off Mr. Wilson's
eyeglasses and sprayed him with mace. Id. at 19, 39
("people were around macing"), 43 ("a girl
with floral shoes sprayed me with mace"). As a result of
being sprayed with mace, Mr. Wilson no longer could see
clearly, but Appellant, who had pushed him flat onto the
street and knelt on him, kept punching and kicking Mr. Wilson
while someone "kept spraying" him. Id. at
43. Mr. Wilson described "feeling everything" and
being punched and kicked until police arrived. Id.
at 20-22, 58-59, 62-63. Appellant kept shouting that he was
"going to kill" Mr. Wilson. Id. at 59.
Mr. Wilson was transported to the hospital, where he was
treated for three hairline rib fractures, a concussion, a
laceration requiring stitches, and "a burnt retina in my
eye from mace." N.T., 3/23/15, at 23. He stated that his
eye "drooled" as a result of being sprayed with
mace. Id. at 24. At trial, the Commonwealth
introduced into evidence three photographs of Mr. Wilson
after the altercation, as well as Mr. Wilson's medical
records. Id. at 71.
Wilson's girlfriend, Carol Mitchell, confirmed that the
altercation began when "words started flying" and
Mr. Wilson and Appellant "got to fighting, "
although "it wasn't just [Appellant]." N.T.,
3/23/15, at 47. Ms. Mitchell said that "everybody jumped
in" including "one male and a bunch of thick
women." Id. at 48-49. She saw someone spray
mace, but she did not know who it was because she just saw
the person's hand. Id. at 49-50. She described
Mr. Wilson afterwards as bleeding, and recalled him spending
a day or two in the hospital.
Police Officer Henry Schoch was called to the scene of the
altercation. He observed "a pile of people on top"
of Mr. Wilson, and "a number of females out there."
N.T., 3/23/15, at 60-61. He stopped the altercation, and
"was left with [Appellant] on top of [Mr. Wilson]."
Id. at 61. He arranged for Mr. Wilson to be
transported to the hospital. Id. at 67.
the neighborhood residents, Jeffrey Jones, witnessed the
encounter from his apartment window and saw Appellant talking
with his girlfriend in the white Jeep. He noticed that
Appellant's attention was diverted "towards the
driveway." N.T., 3/23/15, at 75-76. A "yelling
conversation" ensued, and he saw Appellant "go
down" and both men "fall into the street."
Id. at 76. Mr. Jones went outside and saw
"everybody in the middle of the street."
Id. at 77. He also saw "[Appellant's]
girlfriend and whoever, she was - they seen - they had spray.
Trying to pepper spray this guy because he's a pretty big
the testimony presented at trial and the trial court's
verdicts, Appellant was sentenced to 1½ to 3 years of
incarceration, followed by 3 years of reporting
probation. Appellant filed a post-sentence motion
that the trial court denied. He then filed this timely
states his three issues for review as follows:
[1.] Was not the evidence insufficient to convict appellant
of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon in that 1)
appellant, who was involved in a fist-fight with the
complainant, was not criminally liable as an accomplice for
another person's conduct of spraying the complainant with
mace; and 2) mace was not proven to constitute a deadly
[2.] Was not the evidence insufficient to convict appellant
of conspiracy to commit aggravated assault with a deadly
weapon where the Commonwealth failed to prove that: 1) mace
was a deadly weapon; 2) appellant had a shared intent to
commit an assault with a deadly weapon; or 3) appellant was a
party to a prior agreement to commit such an assault?
[3.] Was not appellant erroneously convicted of possessing an
instrument of crime where the bill of information specified a
knife, and the trial court explicitly found the evidence
insufficient to prove the crime as charged, but nevertheless
convicted him of possessing an uncharged instrument of crime,
a can of mace?
Appellant's Brief at 3.
these issues challenges the sufficiency of the evidence
supporting Appellant's aggravated assault, conspiracy,
and PIC convictions.
A claim challenging the sufficiency of the evidence is a
question of law. Evidence will be deemed sufficient to
support the verdict when it establishes each material element
of the crime charged and the commission thereof by the
accused, beyond a reasonable doubt. . . . When reviewing a
sufficiency claim the court is required to view the evidence
in the light most favorable to the verdict winner giving the
prosecution the benefit of all reasonable inferences to be
drawn from the evidence.
Commonwealth v. Sullivan, 820 A.2d 795, 805 (Pa.
Super. 2003) (citation omitted), appeal denied, 833
A.2d 143 (Pa. 2003). As a reviewing court, we many not weigh
the evidence or substitute our judgment for that of the
fact-finder, who is free to believe all, part, or none of the
evidence. Commonwealth v. Haughwout, 837 A.2d 480,
484 (Pa. Super. 2003).
first two issues, Appellant claims that the Commonwealth
failed to prove the elements of aggravated assault and
conspiracy to commit aggravated assault. The relevant assault
§ 2702. Aggravated assault
(a) Offense defined.-A person is guilty of aggravated assault
(1) attempts to cause serious bodily injury to another, or
causes such injury intentionally, knowingly or recklessly
under circumstances manifesting extreme indifference to the
value of human life . . . .
(4) attempts to cause or intentionally or knowingly causes
bodily injury to another with a deadly weapon;
18 Pa.C.S. § 2702.
conspiracy is governed by Section 903 of the Crimes Code:
(a) Definition of conspiracy.--A person is guilty of
conspiracy with another person or persons to commit a crime
if with the intent of promoting or ...