Is An Officer Authorised to Make An Arrest If He Observes a Person Violating a City Ordinance ?

In In Interest of William M., 440 Pa. Super. 140, 655 A.2d 158 (Pa.Super. 1995), appeal denied, 542 Pa. 649, 666 A.2d 1058 (1995) a Philadelphia Police officer observed a juvenile sitting outside a restaurant at 1:00 a.m. After ascertaining the juvenile's age, the officer placed him under arrest for a curfew violation. A search of the juvenile incident to arrest revealed that the juvenile was carrying cocaine. Id. at 158-159. In appealing his conviction to our Court, the juvenile argued that the evidence obtained as a result of the arrest should have been suppressed since the officer had no authority to make the initial arrest. Our Court disagreed and found that both the ordinance governing curfew violations and 53 P.S. 13349 each provided independent grounds for the officer to make such an arrest. Id. at 161-162. Our Court noted: "By its terms, section 13349 permits an arrest where . . . a police officer observes a breach of a city ordinance." Id. at 163.