A blog of the Philadelphia Bar Association’s Criminal Justice Section

Supreme Court PABy Burt Rose

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Commonwealth v. Spence, No. 33 MAP 2013, 2014 WL 1669795 (Pa. 4/28/14):


This was an appeal from an unpublished Order of the Superior Court, Judges Bender, Ott and Olson, 24 A.3d 452, 3307 EDA 2009, dated February 11, 2011, affirming an Order of Judge Gregory Mallon of the Delaware County Court of Common Pleas, Criminal Division, CP-23-CR-0002445-2008.


The issue on appeal was: Did a state trooper violate the Wiretap Act when he listened through the speaker on an informant’s cellular telephone as the informant arranged a drug deal with the defendant? The Court held (without dissent) that the answer was no, and thereby reversed the unanimous panel decision of the Superior Court.


Chief Justice Castille, Justices Saylor, Eakin, Baer, Todd and Stevens joined the opinion written by Justice McCaffery.


Robert F. Datner, Esq. of Lansdowne represented Spence.


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