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City of Newark v. Civil Service Commission

Decided: February 16, 1935.

THE CITY OF NEWARK, A MUNICIPAL CORPORATION, AND MICHAEL P. DUFFY, DIRECTOR OF THE DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY, PROSECUTORS,
v.
CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION OF THE STATE OF NEW JERSEY, AND JAMES GUILIANO, RESPONDENTS



On certiorari.

For the prosecutors, Frank A. Boettner (Thomas M. Kane, of counsel).

For the respondents, Luke A. Kiernan, Jr.

Before Justices Trenchard, Heher and Perskie.

Perskie

The opinion of the court was delivered by

PERSKIE, J. This writ of certiorari brings up for review the ruling, apparently treated by all parties as a judgment, at least there is no objection raised on this score, of the civil service commission of the state in which it set aside the dismissal of the respondent Guiliano from the position of patrolman in the uniformed police department of the city of Newark, by the director of the department of public safety of that city; and in which ruling it was ordered that said director reinstate the respondent to his position and pay of patrolman in said police department as of January 16th, 1934, the day of his suspension.

The record discloses that respondent Guiliano had been, prior to January, 1934, a member of the police department of the city of Newark for a period of about sixteen years; had been married for twenty-four years and was the father of three children, twenty-three, twenty-one and seventeen years of age; and for about six and one-half years prior to

his suspension he, also, supported his widowed sister-in-law and her three children.

On July 17th, 1934, three separate charges were preferred against him. Succinctly stated they were, substantially, as follows: (1) That he entered a certain building, more fully hereinafter described, while in uniform and not in the actual performance of police duty, i.e., without just cause, and failed to immediately submit a report to his superior officers of his having done so. (Disciplinary rule 13 of the department.) (2) That without just cause he entered this same building and questioned one Elizabeth D. Carney as to whether she had a venereal disease and asked her other improper questions. (Disciplinary rule 16 of the department.) (3) That he was in possession of information which led him to believe that Elizabeth D. Carney was suffering from a venereal disease and failed to report that information to his superior officers. (Disciplinary rule 32 of the department.)

Guiliano pleaded guilty to the first charge before the director of public safety, and on final hearing, held on February 8th, 1934, was adjudged guilty on all charges and ordered dismissed from the department. Thereupon Guiliano appealed to the civil service commission.

The proofs before the commission disclosed that the building, which the respondent was charged as having entered without just cause, and not while in the performance of police duty, was formerly known as the Star Ball Room, and now known as Tangoland, and is located at the corner of Market and Mulberry streets, Newark, New Jersey. This ball room is a public one, and is commonly described as a ten-cent dance hall. The women who worked there were called hostesses; they were obliged to dance with anyone of the patrons who paid the required charge of ten cents a dance.

The place had apparently caused the police department some trouble, because of the congregation of its patrons; there had been complaints of "unnecessary noises" therein; and "loitering and hanging around the place by bums;" "there ...


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