Dear Editor:

This letter is in response to the article written on February 23rd in the Times News regarding myself and my official duties as Constable within the Boro of Weissport.

In today's economy and with a shortfall of money for all towns and Boro's, it is beyond comprehension as to why a council who is always complaining that they don't have enough money for anything within the boro and getting grants to purchase the police vehicles, etc. and complaining that the PSP either doesn't respond fast enough or not at all when the local PD (that they can only give 20 hours a week to) isn't on would fight so hard to distance themselves from FREE assistance from their ELECTED Constable.

The council may state to "distance" themselves from any lawsuit that could arise from the constable, but the Supreme Court of PA has already ruled that a Constable is independent and there is case law already to this effect so that rules that out, the second reasoning would be "control", they can't have control of the Constable. This has been like this since the existence of constables because this way the constable only answers to the voters and not a mayor or a council and there is no intimidation as it could be for a local municipal police, or third we have a boro that does not want any law enforcement what so ever.

The boro council tried to make a statement by saying the Constable does not represent the boro, well let me clarify that statement. I am an ELECTED official of this boro and therefore I do represent this boro whether they accept it or not. I might not represent it as far as on a payroll but none the less I am an elected official of this boro.

Any town or boro or city within this Commonwealth would collapse without structure or some sort of it and it looks more and more the powers to be do not want any sort of structure other than their own. I will say that the council and or mayor of a town and boro do not make the town, the people of the town do, and the council of a town is there to do the people's business and not their own and the sooner this boro learns this the better it will become. A boro or town or city can not take away the authority of a constable. These powers and authority are granted by the State Legislatures and can not be pre-emptied. See further below for just one statue that was again re-affirmed in 2009 and signed by Governor Rendell. I am a CERTIFIED, TRAINED Constable and will continue to do my duties and job.

I can and I will enforce all Weissport Borough Ordinances and write citations for crimes committed within the Borough. A citation is not written to make money for the borough, it is written to see that Justice is carried out and that offenders must account for themselves and their actions, and they have a right to answer the summons and enter a plea of guilty or not guilty. If fines are not paid for or a summons is not responded to, a constable, who is a police officer, (again affirmed with act 147 by the PA Supreme Court) will come and arrest the defendant with a warrant.

If the warrants are issued to me, I will find the defendant listed on the warrant and arrest them on the authority of the warrant. They will be taken into custody and brought before the issuing Magisterial District Judge to be dealt with according to the laws of the Commonwealth of PA.

A Constable can also arrest without a warrant for the following reasons:

"WITHOUT WARRANT AND UPON VIEW, ARREST AND COMMIT FOR HEARING ANY AND ALL PERSONS GUILTY OF A BREACH OF THE PEACE, VAGRANCY, RIOTOUS OR DISORDERLY CONDUCT OR DRUNKENNESS, OR MAY BE ENGAGED IN THE COMMISSION OF ANY UNLAWFUL ACT TENDING TO IMPERIL THE PERSONAL SECURITY OR ENDANGER THE PROPERTY OF THE CITIZENS, OR VIOLATING ANY ORDINANCES OF SAID BOROUGH, FOR THE VIOLATION OF WHICH A FINE OR PENALTY IS IMPOSED." Act 49 7158 : A Constable is a Law Enforcement Officer with arrest powers.

Anyone or anybody who says or thinks otherwise is giving opinion and not fact. The law is the law of the land unless otherwise changed and anything else is nothing. When the highest court in PA rules and gives their opinion on Constables and affirms they are police and can and will arrest without warrant for breaches of the peace then all the councils or DA's or anyone else in the Commonwealth just give their opinion of what they think , it's called "law by legend", something they think is law but isn't because its been the norm for so long.

The good citizens of the Commonwealth of PA have elected Constables all across this great Commonwealth, for the purpose of enforcing local ordinances and for arresting the offenders as described above. It is our duty to do this and to protect all the citizens in our elected districts. What are our good citizens supposed to do when crime occurs? The Constables can help reduce the crime wave sweeping over the Commonwealth today.

I say good citizens stand up and support your local law enforcement officials, the men and women who serve their communities all across this Commonwealth as PA State Constables or your Municipal Police or your PSP or your Sheriffs. You want positive changes in your community, then attend your local council meetings twice a month and DEMAND positive changes.

Sincerely,

James Osborne

Weissport Constable

and proud of it too.