The PEOPLE, etc., Respondent, v. David SERRANO, Appellant.
Appeal by the defendant from a judgment of the Supreme Court, Kings County (G. Beldock, J.), rendered May 1, 1995, convicting him of criminal sale of a controlled substance in the third degree and criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree (two counts), upon a jury verdict, and imposing sentence.
ORDERED that the judgment is reversed, on the law, and a new trial is ordered.
After a Hinton hearing (see, People v. Hinton, 31 N.Y.2d 71, 334 N.Y.S.2d 885, 286 N.E.2d 265, cert. denied 410 U.S. 911, 93 S.Ct. 970, 35 L.Ed.2d 273), the trial court improperly excluded from the courtroom spectators that the defendant asserted were his “common law wife” and two children. The People failed to demonstrate a substantial probability that the woman and children posed a threat to the undercover officer's safety (see, People v. Nieves, 90 N.Y.2d 426, 660 N.Y.S.2d 858, 683 N.E.2d 764; People v. Rentas, 253 A.D.2d 469, 677 N.Y.S.2d 798). Accordingly, the defendant is entitled to a new trial.
MEMORANDUM BY THE COURT.