PROPER COURT TO ISSUE WARRANT – NEW YORK

The application must contain the name of the court (CPL 690.35 [3] [a]). Search warrants are issuable by local criminal courts (CPL 690.35 [2] [a]). A superior court (a supreme court or a county court) may issue a search warrant, but when those courts do so they sit as “local criminal courts” (CPL 690.20 [1]; CPL 10.10 [1], [2]). Under CPL 690.20 (1), a search warrant of the Supreme Court, County Court, District Court, or the New York City Criminal Court may be executed anywhere in the State.

The language authorizing “a local criminal court” to issue a search warrant comports with CPL 10.10 (3) (f) and (g), which contemplates supreme court justices or county court judges sitting as local criminal courts. The New York City criminal court is a local criminal court (CPL 10.10 [3] [b]), as is any district court (CPL 10.10 [3] [a]). Thus, in People v Carson (216 AD2d 965 [4th Dept 1995]), the appellate division upheld a search warrant issued by the county court sitting as a local criminal court even though the warrant did not say so. In People v Johnson (165 Misc 2d 227 [Rochester City Ct 1995]), the court invalidated a search warrant (issued by a county judge) because it did not indicate that the court was sitting as a local criminal court. This decision was rejected, correctly, in People v Rhoades (166 Misc 2d 979 [Sup Ct, Monroe County 1995]).

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