Commonwealth v. Carr

The Pennsylvania Superior Court ruled that a sentencing court erred and abused its discretion by imposing unreasonable and inappropriate probation conditions. Appellant pleaded guilty to indecent assault of an adult victim who was deaf. Appellant is deaf and communicates primarily through American Sign Language and interpreters. He was sentenced to two years of probation with conditions that curtailed his use of computers and electronic devices with Internet capabilities and restricted his contact with minors. He appealed and challenged those conditions. The Superior Court vacated the conditions. First, the Court found no nexus between the crime to which Appellant pled guilty and the restrictions upon his ability to use computers, smartphones, and the Internet. Furthermore, Appellant presented unchallenged testimony that these technological restrictions would severely restrict his ability to communicate. Second, the Court found no factual nexus between the restriction on contact with minors and Appellant’s rehabilitative needs.

Carr