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PA Bulletin, Doc. No. 98-163



Consolidated Rules of Court; No. 9 Miscellaneous 1998

[28 Pa.B. 482]


   Now, this 15th day of January, 1998, it is hereby Ordered:

   1.  The following designated Somerset County Rules of Criminal Procedure (Som.R.Crim.P.), are hereby amended to read in their entirety as reflected in the revised Rules, as follows, effective 30 days after publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin:

Som. R.Crim.P. 303.Arraignment.
Som. R.Crim.P. 303.1.Form of Notice Of Arraignment And Trial.
Som. R.Crim.P. 303.4.Form of Appearance Of Counsel And Waiver Of Arraignment.

   2.  The Somerset County Court Administrator shall:

   A.  File ten (10) certified copies of this Order with the Administrative Office of Pennsylvania Courts;

   B.  Distribute two certified copies of this Order to the Legislative Reference Bureau for publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin;

   C.  File one certified copy of this Order with the Pennsylvania Criminal Procedural Rules Committee; and

   D.  File proof of compliance with this Order in the docket for these Rules, which shall include a copy of each transmittal letter.

By the Court

President Judge

Rules of Court

Arraignment And Notice

Som. R. Crim. P. 303.  Arraignment.

   A.  Arraignment shall be scheduled not later than twenty (20) days after the information is filed, except that later arraignment may be scheduled for cause.

NOTE:  For general scheduling procedures, see Som. R.J.A. 1030 et seq.

   (Formerly R50-302).

   B.  The purposes of arraignment are to assure that defendant is advised of the charges against him; to have counsel enter an appearance, or, if defendant has no counsel, to consider defendant's right to counsel; to commence the period of time within which to initiate pretrial discovery and to file other pretrial requests and motions; to insure defendant has been provided a copy of the information; and to afford defendant an opportunity to plead to the information.

   (Formerly R50-303).

   C.  After filing the information, the District Attorney shall notify defendant and defense counsel of arraignment and trial in the manner specified by Pa. R.Crim.P. 9024. A copy of the information shall accompany the notice. The notice of arraignment and trial shall be in substantially the form prescribed in Som. R.Crim.P. 303.1.

   In addition, however, the District Attorney shall in all cases mail a copy of the information and notice to defendant, by first class mail. The District Attorney shall also mail a copy of the notice to the bondsman, at least ten (10) days before the arraignment date.

   (Formerly R50-304).

   D.  Defendant shall appear personally before the court at arraignment and plead to the information, unless defendant or his attorney at or before arraignment, files with the Clerk of Courts and delivers a copy to the District Attorney, a written formal appearance, waiver and agreement to appear, signed by both defendant and defense counsel, in substantially the form specified in Som. R. Crim. P. 303.4.

   (Formerly R50-305).

   E.  When a case is continued to another term after the notice of arraignment and trial has been given, said notice need not again be given unless it appears that the notice was not received by defendant and the Commonwealth has obtained another address for defendant. In-stead, the Commonwealth may notify defendant as follows:

   1.  If defendant has not pleaded to all charges, notification to appear on the first day of any argument week as selected by the District Attorney which occurs at least ten days after such notice is mailed, (but not later than the next regular call of the criminal trial list) to plead to the information and stating the date, time and place of trial, in substantially the form set forth in Som. R. Crim. P. 303.2.

   2.  If defendent has pleaded not guilty to all charges, notification to appear on the specified date, time and place for trial, in substantially the form specified in Som. R. Crim. P. 303.3.

   (Formerly R50-313).

   F.  The District Attorney shall keep an appropriate office record of the names and addresses of persons notified, the date of mailing and text of the notice.

   (Formerly R50-316).

Som. R. Crim. P. 303.1.  Form of Notice of Arraignment And Trial.

______)NO.   CRIMINAL
19 ______


To the defendant above named:

   1.  You have been formally charged with committing the criminal offense or offenses described in the Information which has been filed against you, copy of which is enclosed.

   2.  The date, time and place of arraignment on said criminal charges are as follows: ______, the ____ day of ______, 19____, at 9:30 a.m. at the Courthouse, Somerset, Pennsylvania.

   3.  You must personally appear before the Court at the date, time and place above stated in paragraph 2 of this Notice unless: (1) you and your attorney sign a waiver of appearance at arraignment in the form specified in Som. R.C.P. 303.4, and (2) you agree to appear personally instead at the Call Of The Criminal Trial List on _____, the ____ day of ______, 19____, at 9:30 o'clock a.m. at the Courthouse in Somerset, Pennsylvania, to plead guilty or not guilty to the charges.

   4.  You have a right to the assistance of an attorney at all stages of these proceedings; if you cannot afford an attorney, one will be appointed for you without cost if you file an application for counsel. You may obtain an application form from the Clerk of Courts, District Attorney, Sheriff, or any District Justice of Somerset County, Pennsylvania. It is important that you obtain an attorney promptly to assist you in these proceedings, if you do not already have one.

   5.  You may request pretrial discovery of information, and inspection of articles or documents, in the possession of the District Attorney pertaining to your case, if you file a written request of the Court within fourteen (14) days after the arraignment date specified above in paragraph 2 of this Notice.

   6.  You may file an omnibus motion for pretrial relief for any of the following purposes: continuance (postponement) of the trial date, severance (separate trial) of one or more of the charges against you, suppression of evidence illegally obtained, psychiatric examination, quashing (dismissing) the information for legal defects, disqualification of a Judge, pretrial conference with the Court, approval of settlement of the charges, or any other appropriate pretrial relief or assistance, if the motion is filed in the Court within thirty (30) days after the arraignment date specified above in paragraph 2 of this Notice.

   7.  You will lose your rights to file a request for pretrial discovery and inspection, and to file an omnibus motion for pretrial relief, unless a written request or motion is filed within the required period of time stated above in paragraphs 5 and 6 of this Notice, calculated from the arraignment date specified above in paragraph 2 of this Notice, or unless the period of time is extended by special Court Order for good cause.

   8.  If you plead not guilty to any of the charges against you, your trial will be scheduled for ______, the _____day of ______, 19____, at 9:30 o'clock a.m., at the Courthouse in Somerset, Pennsylvania, when and where you must appear with your attorney and your witnesses prepared for trial, and must remain until the trial is completed.

   9.  If you fail to appear when required, a warrant will be issued for your arrest.

District Attorney


Som. R. Crim. P. 303.4.  Form Of Appearance And Waiver Of Arraignment.

______)NO.   CRIMINAL
19 ______


   1.  The undersigned attorney enters an appearance for defendant in the above captioned case.

   2.  Defendant acknowledges receipt of the Notice of Arraignment (for the ____ day of ______ , 19 ____) , and Trial (for the ____ day of ______ , 19 ____ ), and receipt of a copy of the Information(s) in the above captioned case(s).

   3.  Defendant understands the nature of the charges, the rights and duties of defendant pertaining to arraignment as stated in said Notice and particularly in Rules of Criminal Procedure 304 (Bill Of Particulars), 305 (Pretrial Discovery and Inspection), and 306-307 (Omnibus Pretrial Motion). Defense counsel has discussed these rights and duties with defendant, and believes defendant sufficiently understands them.

   4.  Defendant waives appearance at arraignment and agrees to appear at the next scheduled Call of the List on the ____ day of ______ , 19 ____ , to plead to the Information(s).

Printed Name of AttorneyAttorney for Defendant
[Pa.B. Doc. No. 98-163. Filed for public inspection January 30, 1998, 9:00 a.m.]

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