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City of Newark v. Charles Realty Co.

Decided: January 17, 1952.

CITY OF NEWARK, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE,
v.
CHARLES REALTY COMPANY, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT



On appeal from conviction.

Francis, J.c.c.

Francis

The defendant here was convicted in the municipal court of violating paragraph 2 of section 1044 of the Plumbing Code of the City of Newark. This paragraph provides as follows:

"The installation of water closets in the yard or on the piazza of any building is prohibited. The entrance to each water closet compartment shall be from the interior of the building, except when a compartment is supplied with adequate heating facilities to protect plumbing fixtures from freezing.

All existing installations of yard and piazza water closets, when not protected from freezing, shall be removed and new water closets placed in the building."

The complaint specifically charged the violation of this section and said:

"* * * In this, that the aforesaid Charles Realty Company, a corporation of the State of New Jersey, being the owner of premises known as 28 Rutgers Street, Newark, consisting of a frame building occupied by two families, did fail to provide said building with water closet compartments, the entrance to which shall be from the interior of the aforesaid building."

At the trial on this appeal the complaint was amended under Rule 2:11(h)(2) by adding after "building":

"And the pipes to the existing water closets not being protected from freezing did fail to place said water closets in the building."

The proofs produced by the plaintiff demonstrated ownership of the building by the defendant; that there was a piazza water closet on each of the two floors of the building; that entrance to each compartment was from the porch; that there were no heating facilities within the water closet compartments to protect the pipes from freezing; and that the trap of the first floor toilet extended under the porch and was completely exposed to outside temperatures, while the trap from the second floor extended within the lower compartment and so was not exposed to the outside. Notice was given to defendant to provide toilet accommodations within the apartments. Failure to comply resulted in this complaint.

No evidence was offered by the defendant. Its motion for judgment of acquittal is founded upon the claim that the ordinance is invalid, because its provisions are unreasonable and vague.

The neglect charged against the defendant transgresses both requirements of the ordinance, but since the nub of each requirement is the protection of pipes and fixtures from freezing, the only questions before the court are whether the ordinance in that respect ...


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