Trial Judge's Authority Regarding a Conviction Pursuant to New York CPL 330.30(1)

In People v. Carter, 63 N.Y.2d 530, 473 N.E.2d 6, 483 N.Y.S.2d 654 (1984), the Court of Appeals made clear that the power granted to a trial judge is far more limited than that granted to an intermediate appellate court. An appellate court has the authority to determine not only questions of law, but also issues of fact and to reverse a judgment when the verdict is against the weight of the evidence or reverse as a matter of discretion in the interest of justice. Since a reversal of a conviction pursuant to CPL 330.30(1) would have to be "as a matter of law" a trial court does not have the authority to evaluate the quality or the weight of evidence unless the defendant claims that the testimony of the witness was so unworthy of belief as to be incredible as a matter of law.