Commonwealth v. Simmons

An en banc panel of the Pennsylvania Superior Court issued a landmark decision regarding a trial court’s authority to revoke probation. The Court interpreted 42 Pa.C.S. § 9721 and § 9754 to forbid the common practice of anticipatorily revoking a defendant’s probation before it begins. Here, the defendant was on county parole when he was … Read more

Commonwealth v. Koger

The defendant appealed following revocation of parole for his conviction of two crimes. He challenged the sufficiency of the evidence, arguing the Commonwealth did not establish the specific conditions of his parole and probation. The Pennsylvania Superior Court agreed and vacated. The Court cited 42 Pa.C.S. § 9754(b) and held that because the VOP court … Read more

McCullough v. Pa. Bd. of Prob. and Parole

In McCullough v. Pa. Bd. of Prob. and Parole, the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court reviewed an Anders brief submitted by the counsel of a parole violator. The Court found the brief sufficient and permitted counsel to withdrawal from the matter. The Court noted that the parolee’s appeal was filed beyond the 30-day limit set forth in … Read more

United States v. Melvin

In United States v. Melvin, the 3rd Circuit clarified the standard for evaluating motions for early termination of supervision pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 3583(e). The Court disavowed two prior non-precedential opinions that required termination “only when the sentencing judge is satisfied that something exceptional or extraordinary warrants it, or upon a showing of new or … Read more

Commonwealth v. Shires

In Commonwealth v. Shires, the PA Superior Court discussed the distinction and significance of conditions of probation and/or parole imposed by the sentencing court, and conditions of supervision, which can be imposed by the probation and/or parole department. Here, the conditions of supervision that the defendant allegedly violated were never ordered by the court nor … Read more