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THE COURTS

Title 234--RULES OF CRIMINAL PROCEDURE

PART I.  GENERAL

[234 PA. CODE CHS. 20, 100, 300, 1500 AND 6000]

Order Amending Rules 27, 180, 181, 304, 1503 and 6001; No. 209; Doc. No. 2

[26 Pa.B. 3126]

Order

Per Curiam:

   Now, this 19th day of June, 1996, upon the recommendation of the Criminal Procedural Rules Committee; this Recommendation having been submitted without publication pursuant to Pa.R.J.A. 103(a)(3), and a Final Report to be published with this Order:

   It Is Ordered pursuant to Article V, Section 10 of the Constitution of Pennsylvania that Pa.Rs.Crim.P. 27, 180, 181, 304, 1503, and 6001 are hereby amended, all as follows.

   This Order shall be processed in accordance with Pa.R.J.A. 103(b), and shall be effective July 1, 1996.

Annex A

TITLE 234.  RULES OF CRIMINAL PROCEDURE

PART I.  GENERAL

CHAPTER 20.  ISSUING AUTHORITIES: VENUE, LOCATIONS AND RECORDINGS OF PROCEEDINGS

Rule 27.  Publicity and Recording of Proceedings.

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   (b)  If it appears to the court that a violation of [section] paragraph (a) has resulted in substantial prejudice to the defendant, the court, upon application by the attorney for the Commonwealth or the defendant, may:

   (1)  quash the proceedings at the preliminary hearing and order another preliminary hearing to be held before the same issuing authority at a subsequent time without additional costs being taxed therefor;

   (2)  discharge the defendant on nominal bail if in custody, or continue his bail if at liberty, pending further proceedings;

   (3)  order all costs of the issuing authority forfeited in the original proceedings;

   [(4)  in counties in which the indicting grand jury has not been abolished, order the case submitted to the grand jury subsequent to the one to be summoned for the term of court to which the defendant has been bound or held, with notice to the defendant and his bondsman, if any, of the term of court in which the case shall be submitted to the grand jury;] and

   [(5)] (4)  adopt any, all, or combination of the remedies herein established as the nature of the case shall require in the interests of justice.

   Official Note:  Formerly Rule 143 adopted January 31, 1970, effective May 1, 1970; renumbered Rule 27 September 18, 1973, effective January 1, 1974; amended February 15, 1974, effective immediately; Comment revised March 22, 1989, effective July 1, 1989; amended June 19, 1996, effective July 1, 1996.

Comment

   ''Recording'' as used in this [Rule] rule is not intended to preclude the use of recording devices for the preservation of testimony as permitted by Rules 9015 and 9015A.

   Committee Explanatory Reports:  Final Report explaining the June 19, 1996 amendments published with the Court's Order at 26 Pa.B. 3128 (July 6, 1996).

CHAPTER 100.  PROCEDURE OF COURT CASES

PART VII.  ACCELERATED REHABILITATIVE DISPOSITION

COURT CASES

Rule 180.  Deferring Action Upon Admission to Program Before Information [or Indictment].

   When a defendant is accepted into the program of accelerated rehabilitative disposition before the filing of an information [or indictment], the judge shall order that no information shall be filed with the court [or that no bill of indictment shall be presented to the grand jury] on the charges contained in the transcript during the term of the program.

   Official Note:  [Approved] Adopted May 24, 1972, effective immediately; amended February 15, 1974, effective immediately; amended June 19, 1996, effective July 1, 1996.

   Committee Explanatory Reports:  Final Report explaining the June 19, 1996 amendments published with the Court's Order at 26 Pa.B. 3128 (July 6, 1996).

Rule 181.  Deferring Adjudication of the Charges Upon Admission to Program After Information [or Indictment].

   When a defendant is accepted into the program of accelerated rehabilitative disposition after the filing of an information [or indictment], the judge shall order that further proceedings on the charges shall be postponed during the term of the program.

   Official Note:  [Approved] Adopted May 24, 1972, effective immediately; amended February 15, 1974, effective immediately; amended June 19, 1996, effective July 1, 1996.

   Committee Explanatory Reports:  Final Report explaining the June 19, 1996 amendments published with the Court's Order at 26 Pa.B. 3128 (July 6, 1996).

CHAPTER 300.  PRETRIAL PROCEEDINGS

Rule 304.  Bill of particulars.

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   (c)  Upon failure or refusal of the attorney for the Commonwealth to furnish a bill of particulars after service of a request [upon him], the defendant may make written motion for relief to the court within 7 days after such failure or refusal. If further particulars are desired after an original bill of particulars has been furnished, a motion therefor may be made to the court within 5 days after the original bill is furnished.

   (d)  When a motion for relief is made, the court may make such order as it deems necessary in the interests of justice.

   Official Note:  Adopted June 29, 1977, effective January 1, 1978; amended October 21, 1983, effective January 1, 1984; amended June 19, 1996, effective July 1, 1996.

Comment

   [This rule replaces previous Rules 221 and 230 in their entirety. Prior to the 1977 revision of this Chapter, the rules dealing with Bills of Particulars appeared in Chapter 200, concerning indictments (Rule 221) and informations (Rule 230).] The 1977 transfer of the provisions concerning bills of particulars from Chapter 200 to Chapter 300 was not intended to change the traditional function of a bill of particulars--namely, to clarify the pleadings and to limit the evidence which can be offered to support the [indictment or] information [--has not been changed by the transfer of the provision to Chapter 300]. The purpose of the transfer was to place the procedure in chronological context with other pretrial matters, including discovery and the omnibus pretrial motion.

   Committee Explanatory Reports:  Final Report explaining the June 19, 1996 amendments published with the Court's Order at 26 Pa.B. 3128 (July 6, 1996).

CHAPTER 1500.  POST-CONVICTION COLLATERAL PROCEEDINGS

Rule 1503.  Docketing and Assignment.

   (a)  Upon receipt of a motion for post-conviction collateral relief, the clerk of [court] courts shall immediately docket the motion to the same term and number as the underlying conviction and sentence. The clerk shall thereafter transmit the motion and the record to the trial judge, if available, or to the administrative judge, if the trial judge is not available. If the defendant's confinement is by virtue of multiple indictments or informations and sentences, the case shall be docketed to the same term and number as the indictment or information upon which the first unexpired term was imposed, but the court may take judicial notice of all proceedings related to the multiple indictments or informations.

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   Official Note:  Previous Rule 1503 adopted January 24, 1968, effective August 1, 1968; rescinded December 11, 1981, effective June 27, 1982; rescission vacated June 4, 1982; rescinded February 1, 1989, effective July 1, 1989, and replaced by present Rule 1504. Present Rule 1503 adopted February 1, 1989, effective July 1, 1989; amended June 19, 1996, effective July 1, 1996.

Comment

   [This rule replaces paragraphs (a) and (b) of former Rule 1502.]

   As used in this rule, ''trial judge'' is intended to include the judge who accepted a plea of guilty or nolo contendere.

   The transmittal of the motion to the attorney for the Commonwealth does not require a response unless one is ordered by the judge as provided in these rules.

   Although most references to indictments and indicting grand juries were deleted from these rules in 1993 since the indicting grand jury had been abolished in all counties, see PA. CONST. art. I, § 10 and 42 Pa.C.S. § 8931(b), the reference was retained in this rule because there may be some cases still pending that were instituted prior to the abolition of the indicting grand jury.

   Committee Explanatory Reports:  Final Report explaining the June 19, 1996 amendments published with the Court's Order at 26 Pa.B. 3128 (July 6, 1996).

CHAPTER 6000.  RULES OF CRIMINAL PROCEDURE FOR THE MUNICIPAL COURT OF PHILADELPHIA

Rule 6001.  Disposition of Criminal Cases--Municipal Court, Philadelphia.

   (A)  Any misdemeanor under the Crimes Code or other statutory criminal offense for which no prison term may be imposed or which is punishable by a term of imprisonment of not more than 5 years, including any [indictable] offense under the Vehicle Code other than a summary offense [under the motor vehicle laws], shall be a Municipal Court case.

   (B)  When one or more such offenses are charged in a single complaint or series of complaints against one defendant, all shall be joined in the same Municipal Court case, regardless of the length of the cumulative sentence which could be imposed on all charges.

   (C)  A case may be transferred from the Municipal Court to the Court of Common Pleas by order of the President Judge of the Court of Common Pleas, or [his] the President Judge's designee, upon [his] the President Judge's approval of:

   (1)  a certification by defense counsel that trial in the Municipal Court will unduly delay defendant's access to a trial by jury; or

   (2)  a certification by both defense counsel and the District Attorney that the trial of the case will be so time consuming as to unduly disrupt the business of the Municipal Court.

   Official Note:  [Adopted] Present Rule 6001 adopted March 28, 1973, effective March 28, 1973, replacing prior Rule 6001; amended June 28, 1974, effective July 1, 1974; [last sentence] paragraph (C) added February 10, 1975, effective immediately; title amended July 1, 1980, effective August 1, 1980; Comment revised January 28, 1983, effective July 1, 1983; amended June 19, 1996, effective July 1, 1996.

Comment

   This Rule is intended to assure that the Municipal Court will take dispositive action, including trial and verdict when appropriate, in any criminal case which does not involve a felony, excluding summary cases under the [motor vehicle laws] Vehicle Code. The latter are under the jurisdiction of the Philadelphia Traffic Court, see [Judicial Code §§ 1301--1303, 1321;] 42 Pa.C.S. §§ 1301--1303, 1321 [(1981)].

   Committee Explanatory Reports:  Final Report explaining the June 19, 1996 amendments published with the Court's Order at 26 Pa.B. 3128 (July 6, 1996).

FINAL REPORT

Amendment of Pa.Rs.Crim.P. 27, 180, 181, 304, 1503, and 6001; Indictments and Indicting Grand Juries

Introduction

   On June 19, 1996, upon the recommendation of the Criminal Procedural Rules Committee, the Supreme Court amended Rules of Criminal Procedure 27, 180, 181, 304, 1503, and 6001. These changes update the references to indicting grand juries consistent with the changes adopted by the Supreme Court on August 12, 1993. This Final Report highlights the Committee's considerations in formulating these amendments.11

Discussion

   On August 12, 1993, the Court rescinded the indicting grand jury rules and amended a number of rules whichreferred to the grand jury process because the indicting grand jury had been abolished in all counties.2

2 The Committee's Report explaining the 1993 changes was published at 22 Pa.B. 3826 (July 27, 1993). In a subsequent review of the rules in general, the Committee discovered that some references to indictments or indicting grand juries had been inadvertently retained in the rules. In view of this, we recommended and the Court adopted the following changes.

RULE 27 (Publicity and Recording of Proceedings): Paragraph (b)(4) has been deleted in its entirety. The procedure is no longer necessary since the indicting grand jury has been abolished in all counties. RULES 180 (Deferring Action Upon Admission to Program Before Information or Indictment) and 181 (Deferring Adjudication of Charges Upon Admission to Program After Information or Indictment): Both Rules 180 and 181 refer to proceedings in cases when a defendant is accepted into a program of accelerated rehabilitation disposition either before or after the filing of an information or indictment. The references to indictment procedures have been deleted from the titles and text of both rules. RULE 304 (Bill of Particulars): The first paragraph of the Rule 304 Comment provides an historical background, and refers to indictments. The historical background and references to indictments have been deleted. RULE 1503 (Docketing and Assignment): The reference to indictments in Rule 1503(a) has been retained because of the possibility that cases which were instituted by an indictment may still be awaiting post-conviction collateral review. The reason for retaining this reference is explained in the Comment. In addition, to make the rule clear that it also applies to cases instituted by an information, ''or information'' has been added after the three references to indictments in paragraph (a). RULE 6001 (Disposition of Criminal Cases--Philadelphia Municipal Court): Rule 6001 has been amended to more clearly convey the point that summary cases under the Vehicle Code are excluded from Municipal Court jurisdiction, and to delete the term ''indictable.''
 
[Pa.B. Doc. No. 96-1088. Filed for public inspection July 5, 1996, 9:00 a.m.]



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