Q: I have a friend who was walking from the corner store, had just bought cigarettes, and threw the plastic wrap on the ground. Police handcuffed her, took her to Central Booking, fingerprinted her and photographed her before releasing her. She was cited with 75 Pa.C.S.A § 3709, but from what I’m reading, the language states “from a vehicle”. How does this law apply in her situation? Would it be worth it for her to fight this charge?
A: Police normally don’t process someone for a summary offense which is what 3709 looks like to me. Frankly I haven’t ever had anyone cited for throwing a plastic wrap on the ground. I would plead not guilty and defend it vigorously. If she was a pedestrian, I agree that § 37089 does not apply but 18 Pa.C.S.A. § 6501 would. If I was her I would fight the charge. Was the area posted?