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VOL. 2, NO. 130 DECISIONS RELEASED JULY 19, 1994 INSURANCE – AUTOMOBILES 23-2-3793 Patrick S. Caughey v. Sham J. Hosein, et al., App. Div. (4 pp.) Where plaintiff’s suffered from back sprain and left eye problems supposedly from an automobile accident, trial court properly dismissed the complaint for failure to meet verbal-threshold criteria, since there was no objective medical evidence supporting the back injuries and there was no medical proof that the accident caused the eye injury. INSURANCE – NEGLIGENCE 23-2-3794 Edith A. Pepe v. Denis A. Dankosky, State Farm Ins. Co., et al., App. Div. (5 pp.) Where defendant insurance agent failed to issue a mortgage life insurance binder to insured’s late husband prior to his death, trial court properly held that insured was entitled to the coverage, since the agent failed to use reasonable diligence to issue a binder and to follow-up. LANDLORD/TENANT 27-2-3795 Metromedia Co. v. Hartz Mountain Assocs., App. Div. (8 pp.) Where plaintiff lessee and defendant lessor areed that lessor would pay the monthly cleaning fees directly to lessee’s cleaning service, but lessee paid the bills, trial court properly awarded lessee money for past cleaning bills from January 1, 1985 until September 1991, even where the lessor alleged that the complaint was filed outside the six year statute-of-limitations, since the matter was filed timely because the breach occurred in May 1991 when lessee sought reimbursement. LAND USE – ENVIRONMENT 26-2-3796 Francis Uncle and Fred Vahlsing, III v. New Jersey Pinelands Comm’n, App. Div. (10 pp.) Where plaintiff land owner could not sell sand and gravel pit because land owner failed to register property as a nonconforming use, chancery court properly upheld the restriction, under N.J.A.C. 7:50-6.61, since the land owner was not deprived of any substantive due process rights. PUBLIC EMPLOYEES 33-2-3797 Shirley Bush v. Teachers’ Pension and Annuity Fund, Div. of Pensions, App. Div. (5 pp.) Where plaintiff, who had worked full-time for a school district, worked part-time for four months before retiring, fund erred in calculating death benefit allowance benefits based on four months of part-time service, since calculations should have been based on contributions she made during her last year of full-time service. PUBLIC EMPLOYEES – ARBITRATION AND MEDIATION 33-2-3798 City of Camden v. Int’l Ass’n of Firefighters, AFL-CIO, Local 788, et al., App. Div. (18 pp.) Where firefighters sued city after it had changed a long-standing practice of assigning a firefighter to fill a vacant captain’s position by mandating that captains staff all fire companies, arbitrator erred in ordering the city to reinstate the practice, since the arbitrator exceeded his authority by relying on past practices and not confining himself to the aagreement terms. CRIMINAL LAW AND PROCEDURE 14-1-3799 State v. Ryan Lee Alexander, Supreme Ct. (28 pp.) Where defendant was convicted of cocaine possession with intent to distribute and being a drug-trafficking network leader, trial judge erred in instructing the jury on the drug-trafficking network charge, N.J.S.A. 2:35-3, since the judge failed to tell the jury that it must find that the defendant occupied a high-level position in a scheme of illegal drug distribution and in that position exercised supervisory power or control over others engaged in an organized drug-trafficking network. 14-2-3800 State v. Thomas Iski, App. Div. (7 pp.) Where defendant was indicted for aggravated sexual assault, trial court properly held that a pretrial taint hearing must he held to determine the admissibility of the alleged victim’s testimony since the police’s questioning of the alleged victim was highly suggestive. 14-2-3801 State v. Kolja Nuculovic, App. Div. (4 pp.) Where officer found heroin inside a credit-card holder after a pat-down search of defendant pursuant to a legitimate automobile stop, trial court erred in suppressing the evidence, since the officer was warranted in his belief that his safety was in danger. 14-2-3802 State v. Billy Perry, App. Div. (9 pp.) Where defendant was convicted of cocaine distribution within 1,000 feet of school property, and possession of a sawed-off shotgun, trial court erred in not severing the trial of weapons offenses from the trial on the drug offenses, since the state did not prove any nexus between the offenses. 14-2-3803 State v. Gregory P. Schaller, App. Div. (4 pp.) Where defendant pled guilty to heroin possession after he was stopped for not signaling before making a lane change, the matter is remanded to determine the validity of the initial stop, since, after defendant was convicted, a state appellate court panel held that to sustain a search incident to a vehicle stop for making an unsignaled lane change, the state must show that defendant’s unscheduled move affected other traffic.

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