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Man sought change of venue to hear Long Beach traffic ticket

A cellphone photo of a traffic citation given

A cellphone photo of a traffic citation given to Kevin M. Holian, 64, of Syosset, during a traffic stop in Long Beach on Dec. 19, 2017. Credit: Kevin Holian

A Nassau Supreme Court judge ruled against a change of venue for a man who received a traffic ticket in Long Beach, where he claimed he was punched by the city police commissioner.

Acting Supreme Court Justice Norman St. George ruled that Kevin Holian, 64, of Syosset, and his attorney, Charo Ezdrin, had not offered any evidence why his traffic ticket should be moved from Long Beach City Court.

Holian has sought to move the case to Nassau District Court in Hempstead because he argued a Long Beach city judge could not hear a fair trial.

Long Beach Police Commissioner and Acting City Manager Michael Tangney stopped Holian Dec. 19, 2017, in his unmarked Lexus SUV when he said Holian ran a stop sign at West Beech Street and Edwards Boulevard.

Holian denied running the stop sign and said Tangney threatened to shoot him, and then punched him in his face when he reached for his glove compartment.

The Nassau County district attorney’s office reviewed the case and closed it on March 9, finding there was insufficient evidence to pursue any charges against Tangney.

Holian had argued that his traffic ticket could not be fairly heard because of the city’s close-knit city government and because Tangney would be called as a witness.

The court also ruled Holian was not entitled to a jury trial in district court for a traffic infraction. The judge said Holian had no valid argument, “only allegations, beliefs and suspicions that the city court may be biased.”

“Here, defendant has offered only surmise, conjecture and not a scintilla of evidence that the judges in the Long Beach court could not be impartial adjudicating this traffic ticket,” the Nassau Court’s March 22 ruling stated.

Holian’s traffic ticket is still set to proceed in Long Beach City Court and prosecuted by the city’s corporation counsel. A date has not been set, but it was last set to be heard by former city corporation counsel and now Judge Corey Klein.

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