In October 2001, defendant and JC got into a fight over a woman, as a result of which defendant’s suffered an injury on his face (a cut from the left ear to his chin). Defendant was treated at ABC Hospital for his wound, which was stitched and bandaged. That incident provided the impetus for a subsequent shooting incident that led to the death of X. The primary issue on appeal from defendant’s conviction for that homicide is his injury claim that certain information provided by a ABC Hospital administrator as to the treatment of a person for a facial wound was obtained in violation of the statutory physician-patient privilege, as it relates to defendant. As a result, he argues, the information obtained from the violation and its fruits-his arrest and identification from a photo array and in a lineup-implicated a constitutionally protected right and must be suppressed.
The suppression hearing adduced the following evidence. Assigned to the shooting death of 16-year-old X, which had occurred at Eastburn Avenue and the service road of the Cross-Bronx Expressway on the morning of October 17, 2001, Detective E learned from the victim’s aunt that the word on the street was that the killing was in revenge for a slashing of a male black at a certain Club several days earlier. JC, the slasher, told Detective E that he had heard that the shooters were some black guys from around 168th Street and College Avenue. Detective E also interviewed C, who related that at about one o’clock on the morning of the shooting, he had heard gunshots and saw a “male black” with a gun pursue a “young Spanish boy” down Weeks Avenue toward the Cross-Bronx Expressway.
On October 18, Detective E went to ABC Hospital and asked an administrator, Ms. BB, “if there were any male blacks that were treated on October 13 for any kind of slash wound to the face” or “if anyone came in for a slashing to the face on that date, October 13th.” Ms. BB gave Detective E an admission slip with defendant’s name and address, xxx Barnes Avenue, and told him that defendant had received stitches on the left side of his face. That same day Detective E showed C a computer-generated black and white photo array containing a “couple of years old” photograph of defendant. C recognized two people in the array, one of whom was defendant, but he “wasn’t too sure” of his identification and “didn’t want to say yes or no” because it was nighttime and the light in the police car was “pretty bad.” C asked to see a more recent photograph or a live person under better lighting conditions.