People v. Giordano

CourtNew York Villiage Court
Citation445 N.Y.S.2d 879,112 Misc.2d 77
Decision Date17 November 1981
PartiesPEOPLE of the State of New York, v. Mary Jane GIORDANO, Defendant.

Page 879

445 N.Y.S.2d 879
112 Misc.2d 77
PEOPLE of the State of New York,
v.
Mary Jane GIORDANO, Defendant.
Village Justice Court of Lynbrook.
Nov. 17, 1981.

Peter L. Ledwith, Garden City, for plaintiff.

Finley Lewis, New York City, for defendant.

Page 880

DECISION AFTER TRIAL

LESTER FOREST, Acting Village Justice.

Defendant is charged with a violation of Section 415(8) of the Vehicle and Traffic Law which is concerned with the use of "number plates" by transporters or dealers.

At the trial the defendant, represented by counsel, stipulated orally to the Court that all the facts were as set forth in the "information". The Simplified Traffic Information states, inter alia, "MISUSE OF DEALERS REG PLATES ON MV (FOR PERSONAL USE)". It was agreed by defendant's counsel that the only issue before the Court was whether defendant's personal use of the vehicle after business hours was permissible.

The defendant contends that, as a matter of law, a vehicle designated by a dealer for sale or demonstration purposes with dealer number plates thereon may be operated after business hours for the personal use of the dealer who owns or controls such vehicle and that no case law states to the contrary. The defendant also submits that it is a common practice among dealers to operate a vehicle, held for sale or demonstration, after business hours for the personal use of family and/or employees.

The People cite only one court decision in support of a conviction herein. The Motor Vehicle Bureau has advised the Court that there are some 60,000 dealer number plates annually issued throughout the State of New York.

The issue before the Court appears to be of some widespread concern and warrants a full, in-depth analysis.

* * *

With the advent of the automobile, Highway Law of 1890 was amended in 1901 to provide in Sec. 166 for automobile registration; the last sentence reads: "This section shall not apply to a person manufacturing or dealing in automobiles or motor vehicles, except those for his own private use." (L.1901, c. 531). In 1903 the provision was amended with the addition of "and except those hired out."

In 1904 the Appellate Division, First Department, reviewed the statute in People v. MacWilliams, 91 App.Div. 176, 86 N.Y.S. 357 and stated:

"The statute does not require an interpretation that the Legislature intended to permit manufacturers and dealers to operate automobiles and motor vehicles, which they have in stock and for sale, upon the public highways. It was evidently deemed unnecessary to require the registration of such vehicles as were held in stock for sale or for repair or on storage in automobile barns and stables. The Legislature assumed that there was little danger to be apprehended that such automobiles and motor vehicles would be used upon the public highways in violation of law, and it, therefore, dispensed with the registration thereof. It indulged, however, in the rational assumption that private owners became such with a view to using the vehicles, and it required such an owner to register his vehicle and obtain a certificate from the Secretary of State and attach a tag for identification, realizing that this would be the most accurate method of identifying the machines when in use upon the public ways. Then it prohibited the use of the vehicle in the public streets without such tag. That prohibition is general, and applies to all automobiles and motor vehicles regardless of the purpose for which they are owned or held. If the manufacturer or dealer wishes to take a vehicle which he has in stock for sale or for repairs or on storage out upon the public streets and operate it by its own power, he may secure that right by registering it as provided in section 166 and attaching to it a tag with a number thereon corresponding to the certificate... It will be observed that even the manufacturer or dealer is required to register any such vehicle that he holds for his own private use or for hire. If he operates an automobile or motor vehicle upon the streets for the...

To continue reading

Request your trial
1 practice notes
  • People v. Giordano
    • United States
    • New York Supreme Court — Appellate Term
    • August 2, 1982
    ...judgment convicting her of violating section 415 of the Vehicle and Traffic Law. Judgment of conviction unanimously reversed on the law, 112 Misc.2d 77, 445 N.Y.S.2d 879, fine remitted and information Personal use of a vehicle with dealer's plates which is held for sale or demonstration doe......
1 cases
  • People v. Giordano
    • United States
    • New York Supreme Court — Appellate Term
    • August 2, 1982
    ...judgment convicting her of violating section 415 of the Vehicle and Traffic Law. Judgment of conviction unanimously reversed on the law, 112 Misc.2d 77, 445 N.Y.S.2d 879, fine remitted and information Personal use of a vehicle with dealer's plates which is held for sale or demonstration doe......

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT