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People of State of N.Y. ex rel. Nevins v Brann

Supreme Court of New York, Queens County

April 13, 2020, Decided

SP No.: 035/2020

Opinion

Joseph A. Zayas, J.

Appearances of Counsel

On March 20, 2020, as the immense magnitude of the COVID-19 public health crisis in New York State became increasingly clear, Governor Cuomo issued Executive Order 202.8. For the general public, the most notable aspect of the order was probably that 100 percent of workers employed by nonessential businesses were directed to begin working from home. But for lawyers, litigants, judges, and court personnel — many of whom had reason to be waiting for the Governor to issue such an order — there was another component of the Governor's Executive Order that was particularly consequential: its tolling of all manner of litigation deadlines and time limitations.

As it turns out, on the same day that Governor Cuomo issued Executive Order 202.8, defendant William Badillo was charged, in a felony complaint, with first-and third-degree robbery. He is currently detained at the Vernon C. Bain Center in the Bronx. He contends, [*2]  in this petition for a writ of habeas corpus, that he is being unlawfully detained, in violation of his rights under section 180.80 of the Criminal Procedure Law. That statute, in simple terms, requires the release of an incarcerated defendant charged by a felony complaint after five or six days, if the prosecution has not, among other things, obtained a Grand Jury indictment or commenced a preliminary felony hearing. Defendant argues that Executive Order 202.8 did not suspend CPL 180.80, and therefore he must be released. If he is correct, all defendants detained on unindicted felony charges — no matter how serious — would be presumptively entitled to release within days of their arrest during this global pandemic.

The Court rejects defendant's interpretation of Executive Order 202.8 and thus declines to order his release from custody. Nevertheless, the Court modifies defendant's securing order as previously indicated in a short-form order.

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2020 N.Y. Misc. LEXIS 1431 *; 2020 NY Slip Op 20083 **

 [**1]  THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, Ex rel. DIANA NEVINS, ESQ. On Behalf of WILLIAM BADILLO against CYNTHIA BRANN, Commissioner, Department of Correction, , Respondent.

Notice: THE LEXIS PAGINATION OF THIS DOCUMENT IS SUBJECT TO CHANGE PENDING RELEASE OF THE FINAL PUBLISHED VERSION.

 THIS OPINION IS UNCORRECTED AND SUBJECT TO REVISION BEFORE PUBLICATION IN THE PRINTED OFFICIAL REPORTS.

CORE TERMS

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