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PA Rule 600 Question

York, PA |

I have a criminal case that’s 34 months old. I had filed for a suppression hearing since last September; however, the court has ye to schedule this hearing. I question I have does rule 600 apply to this case even the long delay of this entire case and the delay of the suppression hearing?

Attorney Answers 2


The rule applies, its application depends on what else has occurred, especially if any waivers were signed.

Pennsylvania Criminal Procedure Rule 600 is PA’s speedy trial statute. Speedy trial rights are designed to protect defendants from prolonged pre-trial incarceration prior to receiving a fair trial.

PA.R.Crim.P 600 defines speedy trial rights in Pennsylvania and sets the rules for when a speedy trial violation occurs. In short, Rule 600 states that the Commonwealth must bring a criminal defendant to trial within 365 days. If the Commonwealth does not do so, and fails to exercise “due diligence” the charges against the defendant must be dismissed with prejudice against the Commonwealth.

There is no indication that you were held in pre-trial incarceration; see Rule 600(E) If a criminal defendant is held in pre-trial incarceration for a period exceeding 180 days they are entitled to immediate release on nominal bail.

Rule 600(C) addresses excludable time for the purposes of Rule 600 calculations. Any delay caused by the defendant in which he/she is unavailable for trial is excluded from PA’s Rule 600 calculation. For example, if the defendant’s lawyer requests a continuance, that time must be excluded from the speedy trial calculation because the delay was not caused by the Commonwealth.

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I agree with Kevin, the rule does apply to your case. Whether or not you have an issue with your rights being violated depends entirely on the procedural facts of the case. If you were the one who caused a 34 month delay in your case all of that time will be excludable time. Contact your attorney right away.

Paul A. Bauer, III, Esquire

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