New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims

SMALLS v.THE STATE OF NEW YORK, #2000-015-519, Claim No. 96776


Synopsis


Claim dismissed after trial due to claimant's failure to make out a prima facie case demonstrating State took possession of his property and failed to return it.

Case Information

UID:
2000-015-519
Claimant(s):
KEVIN SMALLS, a/k/a KAYSHAWN MARTIN
Claimant short name:
SMALLS
Footnote (claimant name) :

Defendant(s):
THE STATE OF NEW YORK
Footnote (defendant name) :

Third-party claimant(s):

Third-party defendant(s):

Claim number(s):
96776
Motion number(s):

Cross-motion number(s):

Judge:
FRANCIS T. COLLINS
Claimant's attorney:
Kevin Smalls, Pro Se
Defendant's attorney:
Honorable Eliot Spitzer, Attorney General
By: Timothy P Mulvey, EsquireAssistant Attorney General
Third-party defendant's attorney:

Signature date:
December 15, 2000
City:
Saratoga Springs
Comments:

Official citation:

Appellate results:

See also (multicaptioned case)



Decision
By this claim, the trial of which was conducted at Marcy Correctional Facility on Monday, October 16, 2000, the claimant alleges the loss of personal property as a result of the negligence of certain State employees.

Claimant testified that he resided in the B-2 unit at Marcy Correctional Facility on June 2, 1997 and that on that date he became involved in a dispute with another inmate. He testified that he knew a fight was imminent and, therefore, secured his property prior to any altercation. A fight did, in fact, occur and claimant was later sent to the special housing unit at Marcy. Claimant testified that an I-64 form inventorying claimant's property was brought to him while in the SHU and that he noted certain property was missing or unnoted on the I-64 form. Claimant testified that he did not know what happened to his property and submitted no proof establishing that he, in fact, possessed any of the items which he contends were lost through the negligence of State employees. As a result, claimant has failed to establish a
prima facie cause of action in bailment as he has failed to prove his possession of the property prior to the bailment, that the items of personal property were in fact delivered into the possession of the New York State Department of Correctional Services, that he demanded their return and, despite the demand, the State failed to return them (see, Weinberg v D-M Rest. Corp., 60 AD2d 550). Since claimant has failed to establish the elements of his claim the claim is hereby dismissed.
Let judgment be entered accordingly.


December 15, 2000
Saratoga Springs, New York

HON. FRANCIS T. COLLINS
Judge of the Court of Claims