Recent Decisions of the New Jersey Appellate Courts
from 2019-08-05 to 2019-08-19

Supreme Court Decisions


Docket No.: a-13-18
Decided: 2019-08-07
Caption: State v. Charudutt J. Patel
Summary:
ALBIN, J., writing for the Court. In State v. Laurick, the Court held that a defendant is not subject to an enhanced custodial sentence for a second or subsequent driving while intoxicated (DWI) conviction if he was not advised of his right to counsel in an earlier DWI proceeding and entered an uncounseled guilty plea or went to trial without counsel. 120 N.J. 1, 16-17 (1990). Here, the Court considers the applicable standards for both indigent and non-indigent defendants who seek relief from an enhanced custodial sentence for a second or subsequent DWI based on a claimed denial of notice of the right to counsel in an earlier DWI case.

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Docket No.: a-7-18
Decided: 2019-08-06
Caption: State v. William T. Liepe
Summary:
PATTERSON, J., writing for the Court. The Court reviews consecutive terms of incarceration imposed on defendant William T. Liepe for convictions arising from a motor-vehicle accident he caused when driving while intoxicated.

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Docket No.: a-79-17
Decided: 2019-08-06
Caption: State v. Keith V. Cuff
Summary:
PATTERSON, J., writing for the Court. The Court granted certification limited to two of the issues defendant Keith V. Cuff raised on appeal from his nineteen -- later reduced to eighteen -- convictions: (1) defendant's challenge to his conviction of three counts of first-degree kidnapping on the basis that, although the trial court instructed the jury on the elements of second-degree kidnapping as a lesser-included offense of first-degree kidnapping, the verdict sheet included no question addressing that offense; and (2) defendant’s challenge to the trial court’s imposition of consecutive sentences, which resulted in an aggregate ninety-eight- year sentence, with more than sixty-six years of parole ineligibility.

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Appellate Division PUBLISHED Decisions


Appellate Division UNPUBLISHED Decisions


Docket No.: a3437-17
Decided: 2019-08-16
Caption: NEW JERSEY DIVISION OF CHILD PROTECTION AND PERMANENCY v. T.W., J.K., JR., and D.H
Status: Unpublished
Summary:
PER CURIAM In this Title 30 action, the Law Guardian for three minor children appeals the Family Part's March 14, 2018 order denying termination of the parental rights of the children's mother and their respective fathers.

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Docket No.: a4211-16
Decided: 2019-08-16
Caption: STATE OF NEW JERSEY v. DONALD EASTERLING
Status: Unpublished
Summary:
PER CURIAM Defendant Donald Easterling appeals from judgments of conviction of robbery, aggravated assault, and related weapons charges, as well as the sentence imposed for those convictions. We vacate defendant's conviction on one count, affirm his remaining convictions, and remand for merger of his convictions on two counts, and resentencing.

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Docket No.: a4967-16
Decided: 2019-08-16
Caption: CHILDREN OF AMERICA, INC v. PAVILION PROPERTIES, LLC
Status: Unpublished
Summary:
PER CURIAM Plaintiffs Children of America, Inc. (COA), Children of America (Parsippany), LLC (COA Parsippany), and Visitel Enterprises, Corp. (Visitel) (collectively COA Parsippany) appeal from the May 30, 2017 order of the Law Division entered after trial of this commercial lease dispute. Defendants Pavilion Properties, LLC (Pavilion) and Michael Puschak cross-appeal from a September 30, 2015 order of the Chancery Division setting the lease commencement date. We affirm the May 30, 2017 order in part, reverse the September 30, 2015 order, and remand for further proceedings.

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Docket No.: a5576-16
Decided: 2019-08-16
Caption: DANIEL CHIRINO v. CITY OF HOBOKEN
Status: Unpublished
Summary:
PER CURIAM Plaintiff Daniel Chirino, a former member of defendant City of Hoboken's Police Department (HPD), appeals from evidentiary rulings made by the trial judge on May 30, 2017 and June 21, 2017, and from the judge's July 7, 2017 order granting Hoboken's Rule 4:37-2(b) motion for involuntary dismissal of plaintiff's complaint.

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Tax Court Cases

Docket No.: 008332-16
Decided: 2019-08-14
Caption: River Rats Inc. v. Borough of Fair Haven
Summary:
This opinion denies summary judgment to plaintiff which requested an Order granting local property tax exemption to the above captioned properties, and grants defendant’s cross-motion for the same relief. For the reasons more fully explained below, the court concludes that plaintiff does not meet the statutory requirements for exemption of buildings used either as a “school” or for the moral and mental improvement of the public; the storage sheds on Lot 21, which are the only structures therein, are not “buildings” as that term has been construed; and Lot 71 does not merit an exemption either as contiguous to Lot 21 or on its own (being vacant land).

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