United States District Court, S.D. New York
July 7, 2004.
ZHU MING WANG and KONG LIANG WANG, Defendants.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: DENISE COTE, District Judge
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
On July 1, 2004, defendant Kong Liang Wang ("Wang") moved for
reconsideration of the June 29, 2004 Opinion and Order ("June
Opinion") denying his motion to suppress. The Government opposed
the reconsideration motion on July 2, and on July 6, Wang
supplemented his motion. For the following reasons, Wang's motion
for reconsideration is denied.
A warrantless search is permitted in areas of an apartment
building where there is no legitimate expectation of privacy,
including a common hallway. United States v. Barrios-Moriera,
872 F.2d 12, 14 (2d Cir. 1989), abrogated on other grounds,
496 U.S. 128 (1990); United States v. Holland, 755 F.2d 253, 255-56
(2d Cir. 1985). This is true even if the area is "guarded by a
locked door." Barrios-Moriera, 872 F.2d at 14.
Wang argues that observations made by officers while in the
backyard and common areas of 13 Market Street are inadmissible
because the residents had a reasonable expectation of privacy in their common areas, which they demonstrated by having a
self-locking door, no listing of residents, and no intercom
system. This contention is contrary to established law in this
Circuit that residents of an apartment building have no
reasonable expectation of privacy in common areas, even behind
Wang argues that it is a matter of common sense that someone in
the backyard cannot see a person enter the building and proceed
up the stairs inside the building unless windows or some device
permit such an observation, and the affidavit is deficient
because it does not explain how those observations were made. The
affiant had no duty to add the detail suggested by Wang. Wang has
failed to meet his burden to show that a hearing is necessary on
this issue: he has failed to show a basis to find the existence
of deliberate falsehood or reckless disregard for the truth, or
that the alleged falsehood was necessary to a finding of probable
Wang also claims that the fruits of the search conducted at
Manhattan Mini Storage should be suppressed because the officer's
affidavit states only that he crouched down to see under the
storage unit's door, without mention of whether he had to place
his head on the floor. Wang does not dispute that the officer
could have seen under the door if had "laid down." This argument is without merit and wholly insufficient to merit reconsideration
of the June Opinion.
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