Must Police Jurisdiction
"Run With the Land?"
A Bronx County Criminal Court has concerns
regarding New York City’s “Operation Clean Halls” (officially known as the
"Trespass Affidavit Program”) on constructive notice grounds. People v. Villa, 2015 NY Slip Op 50429(U) (Crim Ct., Bronx Cty., Mar. 27, 2015).
A building owner participates in the
program by executing a “Clean Halls Affidavit,” which permits police to patrol
the building’s common areas and arrest individuals who are not tenants or
The Affidavit purportedly binds
the owner to continue participating in the program "for perpetuity."
Without knowing if the affidavit was “filed with the Office of the City
Register as easements and
restrictive covenants are required to be filed in order to provide constructive
notice,” the Court doubts the “continued legal viability of the affidavit.” In
addition, the Court observed that the authorization does not “run with the
The Court granted defendant's motion for a
Dunaway hearing to determine if
there was probable cause to effectuate his arrest.
The Court did not explain why failure
to record the affidavit might give the defendant standing to contest the
arrest. The purpose of recording is to alert potential assignees (not
trespassers) to binding covenants. If the Dunaway hearing results in
suppression, the New York City land records may well see an influx of “Clean